EU members must step up Brexit preparations

The European Union has called on member states to step up preparations for Brexit in an advisory document, warning that, the UK’s withdrawal will undoubtedly cause disruption – for example in business supply chains – whether or not there is a deal.

The document suggests that: “Member States may wish to consider measures to mitigate the additional administrative burden that would follow from new border control measures and an increase in requests from economic operators for EU27 licences or certificates.”

It points out that if a withdrawal agreement is ratified before 30 March 2019, EU law will cease to apply to and in the UK on 1 January 2021, i.e. after a transition period of 21 months.

But if a withdrawal agreement is not ratified before 30 March 2019, there will be no transition period and EU law will cease to apply to and in the UK as of 30 March 2019. This is referred to as the “no deal” or “cliff-edge” scenario.

And, it says: “It is important that businesses of all sizes, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), prepare and that they take action now.

“Private actors, business operators and professionals need to take responsibility for their individual situation, assess the potential impacts of a cliff-edge scenario on their business model, make the necessary economic decisions and take and conclude all required administrative steps before 30 March 2019.

“The citizens who will be affected by the withdrawal of the United Kingdom, as well as the public administrations that serve them, should also prepare for 30 March 2019.”

Click here for the document “Preparing for the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union on 30 March 2019”

Enterprise Ireland has created a web site “Prepare for Brexit” highlighting to challenges for Irish companies.

The Dutch government has created a “Brexit impact scanner” for businesses in the Netherlands.

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