The National Audit Office states that UK companies will face major upheaval at the end of the year as a result of Brexit even if the UK and the EU has a future trade deal.
“There is likely to be significant disruption at the border,” the National Audit Office said in a report on Britain’s Brexit readiness published Friday. “Many traders and third parties will not be ready for new EU controls.”
The NAO report lists multiple areas of risk in the UK government’s Brexit planning. It also highlights the looming dangers for commerce between Britain and its largest trading partner EU. From 1st January 2021, Even with a Brexit trade deal, businesses will need to file new customs paperwork and comply with new government IT systems to cross the border.
Johnson’s spokesman Jamie Davies said in context to the NAO report, “Significant preparations for the changes have been made and we will continue to make them to ensure there is a smooth transition, We’ve been working closely with businesses throughout and we’ve intensified our engagement.”
The issues highlighted by the National Audit Office include a failure to expand the number of customs intermediaries to handle post-Brexit paperwork, that means some companies will have to stop trading with the EU. Household names including Tesla Inc. and Kraft Heinz Co. have been among those that have struggled to source the necessary manpower.
The report says the coronavirus pandemic has hampered planning by both government and companies, re-directing staff and resources away from Brexit preparations. It also highlights the danger that the upheaval could coincide with the negative impact of the virus.
“There is a risk that widespread disruption could ensue at a time when the government and businesses continue to deal with the effects of Covid-19,” the NAO report said. “It also needs to be alert to any increased risks of smuggling or other criminal behavior which exploits gaps or inconsistencies in border operations.”
The NAO report mentions, “There is a risk that widespread disruption could ensue at a time when the government and businesses continue to deal with the effects of Covid-19. It also needs to be alert to any increased risks of smuggling or other criminal behavior which exploits gaps or inconsistencies in border operations.”
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