Whether a trade deal has been reached or not, the UK will leave the EU’s Single Market on the 31st December 2020.
In order to reduce the impact of changes SMEs are faced with, there are a few key areas that need to be considered:
- Engage with your suppliers
Make sure you define customs and borders roles and responsibilities to your suppliers so that everyone understands the handover in order to avoid any further delays or costs.
Major disruptions to the UK’s port operations are expected. Identifying who is responsible for managing the movement of your products and making sure they are prepared, as well as identifying the areas that present the biggest risk to delivery in your transport route, will help ensure the interruption to receiving the goods is minimised.
- Understand the points-based immigration system
EU and EEA citizens that are residents in the UK before 31st December 2020 will be able to apply for a settled status, provided they apply before 30th June 2021.
Therefore, if you have any EU or EEA citizens working for you, make sure they are aware about the EU Settlement Scheme to avoid any potential pitfalls.
In addition, make sure you are familiar with the ‘right to work’ checks that will apply from 1st January 2021 if you were to take on an EU or EEA citizen.
- Know the changes to regulations and compliance
Although there is still uncertainty about what trade barriers might be in place between the UK and EU, there will likely be new regulatory requirements, conformity assessments, licencing obligations and more.
Changes regarding for example, testing, product registration and labelling will need to be identified to form a plan of action to address such changes.
- VAT changes
Import VAT will become payable on the UK/EU movements of goods, and there will also be sector-specific changes to VAT law that business may need to consider.
Make sure to review the supply chains for goods and services to identify where changes to VAT law will impact the business, and for goods supply chains, check the rules relating to entitlement to recover import VAT.
You can get a personalised list of actions following the link below:
Disclaimer - All information in this post was correct at time of writing.