The Impact of Brexit

What does Brexit mean for our industry and your business?

The UK's vote to leave the EU raises complicated questions in the UK, the rest of the EU and beyond, and across all business sectors. Meanwhile the full impact of Brexit is still very uncertain.

We are moving towards the most crucial phase of the Brexit negotiations. By the end of October the Brexit Deal between the UK and the EU should probably be completed, to give both parliaments time to examine the result and to make sure everything is prepared before the deadline on the 29th of March 2019.

At a joint press conference held on 19 March 2018, David Davis and Michel Barnier representing the United Kingdom and the European Union announced the agreement in principle to a draft Withdrawal Agreement (“WA”) containing a transitional period of 21 months, i.e. from the entry into force of the withdrawal agreement (no later than 30 March 2019) until 31 December 2020. But still formal ratification will be required, because ‘Nothing is agreed until everything is agreed’.

But after the publication of the UK Government’s ‘White Paper on The future relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union’ (download), the situation has not improved and even more chaos has been the result. The Conservative Party is in a state of civil war, with MPs attacking each other on the Brexit issue and seemingly incapable of uniting around a common narrative.

Whether there will be a deal between the UK and the EU is still uncertain. There’s a growing concern about a no deal Brexit. So will there be a deal or no deal, a second ‘Final Say’ referendum or even general elections?

According to BusinessEurope*; “Businesses now lack the clarity to prepare adequately for Brexit, and the possibility of a “cliff-edge” scenario whereby the UK leaves the EU and ends the transition phase without an agreement on the future relationship remains a high risk. Brexit could lead to significant costs for businesses. Both the EU and the UK must therefore move forward to deliver the best possible outcome and pursue the closest possible relationship for the benefit of its companies and citizens, all while safeguarding the integrity of the European Single Market”.

ECMA could not agree more with the abovementioned statement. Our industry needs clarity and a close future relationship between the UK and the EU to guarantee the free movement of goods (and services), also to prevent traditional border formalities will be reintroduced. 

Baker Botts LLPBREXIT AND THE IMPACT ON BUSINESS | David Gabathuler, Baker Botts LLP (UK)
Following the UK vote to leave the EU, we have invited David Gabathuler, consultant at Baker Botts LLP, to the ECMA Congress to explain the impact that Brexit could have on our industry and your business.


Future Timeline

Summer 2018

Withdrawal, Trade and Customs Bills must complete passage through the Houses of Parliament

October 2018

Withdrawal and Transitional negotiations must be concluded to allow ratification by EU27 to start – Trade Discussions may continue through the transitional period

October/November 2018

European Parliament votes on Withdrawal Treaty

29th March 2019

UK leaves the EU or negotiations are extended if all 28 countries and Commission and European Parliament agree. Transitional period envisaged to begin

23rd to 26th May 2019

European Elections – UK MEPs cease to exist

31st December 2020

End of Transitional Period

Also interesting: 'Brexit: the customs implications and solutions' published by BusinessEurope

*BusinessEurope is the leading advocate for growth and competitiveness at European level, standing up for companies across the continent and campaigning on the issues that most influence their performance. A recognised social partner, who speaks for all-sized enterprises in 34 European countries whose national business federations are direct members.