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Brexit Bulletin – October 2019
Brexit Bulletin – October 2019

Welcome to the October 2019 edition of the BPIF's Brexit (Brextension?) Bulletin. Today's the day the UK was due to leave the EU (I'm sure I remember writing that six months ago too!) but at time of writing, we are moving into a ‘flextension' period granted by our European friends. Oh, and hurtling towards a General Election on 12 December, with Royal Assent (the Queen's sign-off, merely a formality) for the Early Parliament General Election Bill expected today or tomorrow.

You can add colleagues to our mailing list by logging into the members' area of the BPIF website or contacting your Regional Director.

In this month's Bulletin:

1. Brexit update
2. What's in the new Brexit deal?
3. Firms accelerated onto simplified import procedures
4. Government's ‘Ready for Brexit' roadshows online
5. Make UK podcast
6. Latest publications

1. Brexit update

Where to begin with this month's Brexit update? The key point is that we haven't left the EU, nor has the Prime Minister 'died in a ditch'. ‘Get Ready for Brexit on October 31' is now redundant, and we can enjoy Halloween without the prospect of a no-deal Brexit thrown into the usual celebration of all things scary.

Having said that, a General Election is on the cards instead. On Monday 28, the Prime Minister's attempt to call a snap election under the terms of the Fixed Parliaments Act - which requires two thirds of MPs to support a poll - failed with lack of Labour support. But following the EU's announcement of the ‘flextension', Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn changed his mind about going to the polls, on the basis that the flextension would make a no-deal Brexit before an election impossible. Alternative legislation - The Early Parliamentary General Election Bill - was hastily put forward and supported by Corbyn and 127 Labour MPs. It's progressed through the Commons and Lords extremely quickly, with the Lords giving their approval yesterday. So Parliament is set to dissolve on 6 November for the campaign period and the election will be held on 12 December.

It'll be the first December election since 1923. Traditionally, rain and cold weather on polling day has worked to the advantage of the Conservative Party, who have a higher proportion of registered postal voters (and, in years gone by, ownership of cars!).

If I'm not the only one interested in the impact of weather conditions and Christmas on elections, you can read more here.

MPs standing down at this election include some prominent names - Sir Ken Clarke, Amber Rudd, Rory Stewart, Jo Johnson (the PM's brother), John Bercow (current Speaker), Nicky Morgan, Gloria De Piero, Owen Smith, Dr Vince Cable and Norman Lamb.

If you're interested in inviting one or more election candidates (there are no MPs during an election campaign) to visit your business, then check out our online resources and contact Carys on [email protected] to help you set it up.

If you're not sure which constituency your premises are in, click the link below.


2. What's in the new Brexit deal?

The new deal struck on Thursday 17 hinged around replacing the controversial Irish backstop which scuppered Theresa May's attempts to make Brexit happen.

The new deal will see a legal border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. But in practice the customs border will be between Great Britain and the island of Ireland, with goods being checked at 'points of entry' in Northern Ireland.

Duty won't automatically have to be paid on goods coming into Northern Ireland from Great Britain. But if a good is at risk of then being transported into the Republic of Ireland (i.e. the EU), then duty will have to be paid. It's likely that if a good is deemed at risk of entering the EU, the importing firm in Ireland will pay the tax, but if the good ends up staying in Northern Ireland, the tax will be refunded by the UK.

On the matter of regulation, Northern Ireland would keep to the rules of the EU's single market, rather than UK rules. This means product standard and safety checks won't have to be carried out at the border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. It will, though, add to checks between the rest of the UK and Northern Ireland, as the rest of the UK won't be sticking to EU single market rules. The deal gives the Northern Ireland Assembly - assuming it's sitting again - a vote, no earlier than January 2025, on all of this.

The Transition Period, during which the UK will need to abide by EU rules and pay into the EU budget, but will lose membership of its institutions, is still set to last until the end of December 2020.

To read more about the new deal, click the link below.


3. Firms accelerated onto simplified import procedures

Following HRMC's decision to automatically register businesses for EORI, it has now automatically registered 95,000 businesses for Transitional Simplified Procedures (TSPs) on importing. This will allow most traders up to six months to pay import duties and submit customs declarations if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

Businesses being registered for TSP are UK-based traders who HMRC has a record of having imported goods from the EU in 2018. HMRC is in the process of sending letters to these traders with further details of their TSP registration.

Importers do not have to use TSP: they still also have the option to use full import processes instead. However, HMRC strongly advises traders new to dealing with customs to take advantage of the benefits of TSP.

4. Government's ‘Ready for Brexit' roadshows online

The live Get Ready for Brexit roadshows seemed to have rolled to a stop, but extracts can now be viewed online. There is a specific, 20 minute, presentation on trading with the EU from the Department for International Trade.

You can also call the Government's helpline for traders on 0300 3301 331 - lines are open 8am-6pm Monday to Friday.

To view the extracts, please click the link below.


5. Make UK podcast

Make UK (formerly EEF) have started a podcast series specifically for manufacturers, covering Brexit preparations. In handy ten minutes broadcasts, you can listen on the Make UK website or on Spotify. Podcast 1 covers ‘Paperwork & Tariffs', and podcast 2 is about ‘Protecting Your Workforce'.

6. Latest publications

We've trawled through the latest publications about Brexit of particular relevance to the printing industry.



31 October 2019

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For more information please contact:
Carys Davis
Carys Davis
Public Affairs Adviser
07854 950316
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