The Freight Transport Association (FTA) is demonstrating its commitment to represent members at the highest level in negotiations to leave the EU by joining a new HMRC Brexit working group.
FTA is a long-standing member of HMRC’s Joint Customs Consultative Committee (JCCC) and has now joined the Brexit working group that reports to the committee. This gives FTA members a clear two-way communication channel with customs officials to ensure the needs of the logistics sector are taken into account.
FTA will provide input via its own Customs Working Group, which is open to all members and will concentrate on issues arising from Brexit.
Alex Veitch, FTA’s customs lead and Head of Global Policy, said: “Whatever the shape of the final relationship between the UK and the EU, there must be a business-friendly solution for customs issues. FTA members want business as usual, meaning no additional red tape, border delays, or tariffs on trade with EU member countries.
“The potential for more red tape alone is immense. Currently, trade within the EU does not require customs declarations. Around half of UK foreign trade is with EU member states, so thousands of British companies have never had to deal with customs bureaucracy. There would be significant costs involved to do these declarations, particularly for SMEs, as they would require specialist training or consultancy support. The Government computer system handling these declarations would also need significant upgrades to cope with at least a doubling of declarations.
“The potential for border delays due to customs inspections, plus the economic impacts of higher tariffs, are equally important and must be addressed as part of Brexit negotiations.”
FTA is leading for logistics on Brexit and has identified an ABC of key issues for the industry in the UK. The Association has events, news feeds, web resources and campaigning actions to support businesses in these uncertain times, whether engaged in global or European supply chains or moving goods solely within the UK.
Please see http://www.fta.co.uk/policy_and_compliance/brexit/ for more information. FTA will also develop a Manifesto for Brexit to present the key issues to decision makers.