Categories
After Brexit No Deal Preparations for Brexit

Brexit readiness report – 08 October 2019

Preparations to ensure that the UK is ready for Brexit on 31 October will be set out in a paper published today by the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove.

The Government has put forward serious and reasonable proposals to the EU and continues to work at pace to secure a deal, but this will require movement from the EU. If we leave 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:

o 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;

o 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;

o 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 Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Rt Hon Michael Gove MP said:

“It is the top priority of this Government, and principal focus of my job, to get ready for Brexit on 31 October with or without a deal. We would prefer to leave with a deal, and continue to work in an energetic and determined way to achieve one, but we must be prepared for all eventualities.

This report sets out what will change if we leave without a deal and explains what the Government is doing to get ready. Significant preparations have been underway for the last three years and these have been accelerated under the Prime Minister’s leadership. At every point, the Government will be candid about any further challenges ahead as well as clear-eyed about the opportunities. Together, government, businesses and citizens are working so that we will be ready for Brexit on 31 October– and can look forward to the future with certainty and confidence.”

In a further move to get the country ready and to help ensure the UK’s health sector is prepared, the Government is today establishing a dedicated ‘Support Unit’ for suppliers of medical goods in the health sector. This will help to ensure that companies have the necessary customs paperwork in place for border arrangements ahead of Brexit on 31 October, if we leave without a deal. These teams of specialists will be able to provide traders operating in the health and social care sector with up-to-date advice and practical guidance on the steps they need to take to prepare.

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

o significant increases in the number of customs agents at the borders;

o a new import/ export helpline to answer businesses’ questions;

o the largest ever government public information campaign to get public and business owners ready for Brexit;

o 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

o secured additional freight capacity and worked on preparations with our suppliers and partners, to ensure the stockpile of critical medicines and goods.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/brexit-readiness-report-published

The full report (159 pages) is available:

No-Deal Readiness Report (pdf)

No-Deal Readiness Report (local copy pdf)

Categories
Brexit General Info Politics

Getting ready for Brexit campaign

If you think that the UK will ever leave the EU you may want to take a look at a new Government initiative, launched on 1 Sep 2019.

The Government has launched a new public information campaign, “Get Ready for Brexit“, that will be available across TV, Social Media Billboards and other platforms.

Government research shows that only 50% of the population think it’s likely the UK will leave the EU on 31 October, 42% of small-to-medium sized businesses are unsure of how they can get ready and just 31% of the British public have looked for information on how to prepare for Brexit.

The campaign will tackle this head on by setting out what all members of the public and business owners might need to do, if anything, to get ready to leave the EU on 31 October.

Audiences including UK citizens intending to travel to Europe and all exporters to the EU will be targeted, alongside groups requiring particular information such as the equine industry and legal professions.

Some of the key actions audiences need to take include:

  • Acquiring an Economic Operator Registration and Identification number to export to the EU. Businesses that are VAT registered will automatically issued an EORI number, but micro businesses still need to register themselves.
  • Obtaining the correct documents to transport goods at the border.
  • Applying for the vital support packages available for businesses, such as grants.
  • Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove said:

    Ensuring an orderly Brexit is not only a matter of national importance, but a shared responsibility.

    This campaign will encourage the country to come together to Get Ready for Brexit on 31 October.

    Advertising accompanied with targeted road shows and events will drive people to GOV.UK, which has a new checker tool so audiences can identify what they need to do to get ready for Brexit quickly.

    https://www.gov.uk/brexit

    https://www.gov.uk/get-ready-brexit-check

    There will be how to videos and step by step guides – so whether you are a small business owner, haulier or EU citizen residing in the UK – the actions you need to take to prepare will be clear and simple.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/news/get-ready-for-brexit-campaign-launched

    Categories
    Brexit Information

    Michael Gove statement to Parliament

    Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Michael Gove addressed the House of Commons on 3rd September 2019.

    Transcript:

    Thank you very much Mr Speaker. This is the first time that I have appeared at the dispatch box since I moved on from the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the superb team of civil servants at that department who do so much to improve the lives of so many across this country, and with your permission, I will make a statement about preparations for our departure from the European Union.

    More than three years ago, in the biggest exercise in democracy in our country’s history, the British people voted to leave the EU. But so far this Parliament has failed to honour that instruction. Now our Prime Minister has made clear that we must leave by October 31st. And so we must. Trust in this House depends on it. Trust in our democracy depends on it.

    Of course, this Government is determined to secure our departure with a good deal, one that paves the way for a bright future outside the single market and the customs union. And the response the Prime Minister has received from European leaders shows they are ready to move. They want a deal too. And they are moving because the Prime Minister has been clear that matters must be resolved by October 31, if we drift, then the incentive on them to deliver quickly will dissipate. So I hope my colleagues in the House of Commons will give the Prime Minister the time and space he needs to pursue the opening he has secured and get a deal we can all support.

    But of course we must be prepared for every eventuality.

    Categories
    Brexit No Deal

    Article by Michael Gove – No-deal is a very real prospect

    No-deal is a very real prospect. We must ensure we are ready” is an article by Michael Gove, originally published in The Sunday Times on 28 July 2019.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/no-deal-is-a-very-real-prospect-we-must-ensure-we-are-ready-article-by-michael-gove

    Last week, I was honoured to be asked by our new prime minister to lead on this government’s No 1 priority preparing the country to leave the EU, come what may, on October 31. Three years after an historic and decisive referendum vote by the British people, the United Kingdom is finally on the cusp of leaving the European Union.

    With a new prime minister, a new government, and a new clarity of mission, we will exit the EU on October 31. No ifs. No buts. No more delay. Brexit is happening.

    It’s our aim to ensure we can leave with a deal. We want to continue with warm and close relations with our friends, allies and neighbours in the EU. We will do everything in our power to conclude a good agreement that honours the referendum result and secures a brighter future for us outside the single market and the customs union.

    What we can’t do, however, is simply present parliament once again with the same withdrawal agreement it’s already rejected three times. You can’t just reheat the dish that’s been sent back and expect that will make it more palatable.

    So we need a new approach and a different relationship. Critically, we need to abolish the backstop and ensure we find a different way to handle trade, and other important relations, on the island of Ireland.

    Categories
    Brexit Brexit Negotiations

    UK Government in Brexit meltdown ?

    Is the UK Government in a Brexit meltdown? Following the meeting of the full cabinet at Chequers, which came up with an “agreed” plan for the future relationship between the UK and EU following Brexit. It appears, however, that perhaps everyone is not actually in agreement with initial skirmishes from Brexit supporting MPs considering it to be a bad “deal”.

    David Davis resigns from his position as Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union and chief Brexit negotiator for the UK saying he could no longer support the government’s Brexit policy announced at Chequers last week.

    He said it was “not tenable” for him to stay in post and try to persuade Tory MPs to back the policy when he did not think it was “workable”.

    “The best person to do this is someone who really believes in it, not me.”

    He was closely followed by his No 2 at the Department for Exiting the EU, Steve Baker.

    Number 10 has announced Dominic Raab, a Brexit-supporting minister, to replace David Davis as Brexit secretary.

    Raab was previously housing minister and replaces Davis, who resigned late on Sunday night saying he could no longer support the government’s Brexit policy announced at Chequers last week.

    Jacob Rees-Mogg, the Conservative backbencher and chair of the pro-Brexit European Research Group, has said that the fact that No 10 is briefing Labour MPs on Theresa May’s Brexit policy suggests that May thinks she will have to rely on “socialist votes” to get her plan through Parliament.

    Boris Johnson resigns as Foreign Secretary shortly before Theresa May makes a statement in Parliament.

    In his resignation letter Johnson said

    “The Brexit dream is dying”

    Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has been named as the new Foreign Secretary. In his initial comments he said

    He would be standing “four square” behind the prime minister “so that we can get through an agreement with the European Union based on what was agreed by the Cabinet last week at Chequers.

    (assuming, of course, that the EU negotiation team want to play ball!)

    Parliamentary private secretary Chris Green, has also resigned saying in his resignation letter,

    “The direction the negotiations had been taking have suggested that we would not really leave the EU and the conclusion and statements following the Chequers summit confirmed my fears.”

    It seems that Theresa May has managed to head off a possible leadership challenge, at least for the time being, following a meeting with the 1922 Committee of Tory MPs. Under Conservative party rules it is necessary for 48 MPs (15% of MPs) to write a letter to Graham Brady, chair of the 1933 Committee requesting a leadership challenge.

    With the addition of Jeremy Hunt as Foreign Secretary, the most powerful positions in the cabinet PM, Chancellor, Foreign Secretary and Home Secretary (referred to as the Great Offices of State) are now held by MPS who wanted to Remain in the EU. Looks like Theresa is setting out her intention to Remain after all.

    Michael Gove has urged Tory MPs to back a compromise Brexit plan as the best chance of a “proper” exit from the EU. He told the BBC it was not all he hoped for, but said he was a “realist” and dismissed claims it would leave the UK as a “vassal state”. But he warned the EU had to be more generous or the UK would have no option than to walk away without a deal.

    An option from the Chequers meeting, which is being somewhat overlooked by the mainstream media, refers to increasing preparations for a no-deal scenario resulting from negotiations with the EU. In this case, the UK would trade with the EU on World Trade Organisation terms. Preparation for this possibility should have started 2 years ago, after Article 50 was invoked, but better late than never – this could possibly strengthen the UKs negotiating position with the EU who have proved somewhat intransigent in negotiations thus far with few if any concessions being made on their side (negotiations in “Good Faith” pah).

    Alarmed at the threat of a no-deal Brexit, the Netherlands is recruiting 930 customs officers and 100 veterinary officials, following a recommendation from Pieter Omtzigt, a Dutch centre-right MP and two fellow MPs.

    “The way Britain has waited so long has imposed real costs even if it is solved.”

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-eu-netherlands/dutch-cabinet-drafting-playbook-for-chaotic-brexit-parliament-idUSKBN1JZ278

    The European commission are being guarded in their response to the Chequers meeting, preferring to wait until it sees the British white paper, which is expected on Thursday.

    In a tweet, perhaps still thinking the UK will remain in the EU, Donald Tusk said:

    “Politicians come and go but the problems they have created for people remain. I can only regret that the idea of #Brexit has not left with Davis and Johnson. But…who knows?”

    Michel Barnier tweeted:

    #Chequers discussion on future to be welcomed. I look forward to White Paper. We will assess proposals to see if they are workable & realistic in view of #EUCO guidelines. Next negotiations w/ #UK on WP, & Withdrawal Agreement, w/c 16 July #Brexit

    Other interesting articles/reports/comments

    Tony Connelly: The Chequers die is cast

    EU diplomats remain guarded over May’s Brexit compromise