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FTA warns against dangers of last minute Brexit deal

10 June 2020

Business must be allowed sufficient time to prepare for whatever Brexit agreement is reached between the EU and UK, according to FTA.

As the latest round of talks between the two sides concludes with no progress announced, and indications given that there may not be a formal agreement between the two sides until October at the earliest, the organisation has written to Michael Gove MP to insist that there is sufficient time allowed at the end of the negotiations to enable the industry charged with keeping Britain trading to adapt to new arrangements, whatever is agreed.   

“Logistics as a sector is fully committed to making a success of Brexit,” says Elizabeth de Jong, Policy Director at FTA, “but in order to do so, we will need time to prepare for whatever the final agreement looks like. We are not asking for the talks to be prolonged, but for sufficient time to be allowed for those required to undertake new business processes to get ready to do so.   

“It looks more and more likely that consensus will not be reached between the two sides until the eleventh hour, with the UK’s transition period for leaving the EU ending on 31 December 2020. Therefore, there will simply not be enough time to put in place all the necessary systems and processes to help trade continue to run smoothly. This will be compounded by the fact that Christmas is traditionally our sector’s busiest time of year and there will be little time available for the necessary changes to be made."

FTA was the first major trade association to call for an extension to the transition period back in March, for purely practical reasons and, as Ms de Jong explains, has written to Michael Gove this week to urge government to consider new options to give the logistics industry sufficient time to prepare for the future trading arrangements with the EU.