UK-EU Separation: Preparing for the end of the Transition Period

12th May 2020

Whilst the chaos of this global pandemic understandably dominates world headlines, behind the scenes the UK continues to prepare for the end of the agreed transition period on 31st December 2020.

Prior to the outbreak of COVID-19 earlier this year, the UK spent 3 ½ years debating a withdrawal agreement with the EU.

Whilst the chaos of this global pandemic understandably dominates world headlines, behind the scenes the UK continues to prepare for the end of the agreed transition period on 31st December 2020. We left the EU on 31st January 2020 and the transition clock is ticking...

Both the UK and EU have declared their respective starting positions for the trade talks – with some key differences to be overcome. Discussions thus far have not been very fruitful, and it has been suggested that there is little prospect of agreement on the most contentious issues without a ‘major reset of positions’.

June is a major decision point.

With only two further rounds of video talks scheduled before then, there is a very real possibility that the UK could walk away from the negotiating table. Given that 31st December 2020 is enshrined in law as the end of the transition period, that would mean we would leave with no trade deal – with all the challenges of becoming a 3rd country that would imply.

Irrespective of the outcome of the trade talks, the customs border with Europe will be operational from 1st January 2021. This will have a very practical impact on business operations and processes.

How well has your business prepared for this?

Are your staff aware of the changes in process and the obligations of the Exporter/Importer? From the simplicity of ensuring drivers have the correct paperwork, to the complexities of customs authorisations and simplified procedures, we are not facing the same ‘no deal cliff edge’ that we saw several times in 2019. The government’s mantra is that the deadline will not be extended and that businesses should be prepared.


Sheffield Chamber Bite-size Training Sessions to Prepare your Business

If you would like to learn more about some of the key issues your business should be thinking about, then please join us for one of our online bite-size training sessions.

These sessions are designed to give you an overview of some of the key practical issues you need to consider. You then have the option to extend this learning by staff participation in more detailed online training around specific subject areas.

All our training will be delivered via our Zoom interactive learning platform, working with one of our international trade specialists.

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