UK Government Publish No-Deal Readiness Report

The UK Government has published a Brexit readiness report detailing the UK’s preparedness ahead of its declared aim of leaving the European Union on 31 October.

The Government has said that it has put forward serious and reasonable proposals to the EU and is continuing to work at pace to secure a deal, but this will require movement from the EU. If the UK leaves without a deal, the Brexit readiness report includes details of the Government’s work to make sure that citizens and businesses are ready for Brexit on 31 October.

The report also sets out the preparation underway to ensure that goods continue to flow smoothly across the UK and EU border after Brexit, with measures in place and information given to traders, businesses and hauliers on what they need to do to prepare before 31 October.

These include:

  • the automatic allocation of Economic Operator Registration Indicator (EORI) numbers to 88,000 VAT registered companies across the UK that frequently trade with the EU;
  • postponed VAT accounting for both EU and non-EU imports, enabling VAT-registered businesses to wait until their next VAT return to declare and recover import VAT on goods- helping their cash flow and reducing costs at the point of import;
  • a Temporary Tariff Regime (TTR) for all imports, including from the EU, supporting consumers, business supply chains and those sectors in the UK economy that would most benefit from support as we leave, for up to 12 months; and
  • HMRC sending 220,000 businesses guidance on the steps they need to take to import and export after we leave the EU on 31 October.

The Brexit readiness report released today outlines preparations that have been made to support businesses and citizens if the UK leaves without a deal, including:

  • significant increases in the number of customs agents at the borders;
  • a new import/ export helpline to answer businesses’ questions;
  • the largest ever government public information campaign to get public and business owners ready for Brexit;
  • organised business readiness events with more than 800 attendees to support businesses to get ready for Brexit, with 29 additional events in the pipeline. Secured additional funding to deliver webinars for EU companies to tell them what they need to do; and
  • secured additional freight capacity and worked on preparations with our suppliers and partners, to ensure the stockpile of critical medicines and goods.

Historically CECA has not taken a position on whether to leave or remain in the EU. However, we have also expressed real concerns about the potential impact that leaving the European Union without a deal may have on the infrastructure sector and the wider economy. We will keep members informed of developments.