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Brexit Weekly Digest 26 March

This week we speak about the collapse of UK food and drink exports, discuss the development of the Irish Sea border, and show you where to find the best information and guidance on moving goods from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. Plus, upcoming webinars that could help you understand the new rules.

Data shows collapse of UK food and drink exports post-Brexit

The Food and Drink Federation (FDF) have revealed figures that show whisky, cheese, and chocolate as the biggest losers of the top 10 products exported to the EU in January. Exports of other goods such as salmon and beef declined by 98% and 92% respectively.

A spokesperson from The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra), told The Guardian “A unique combination of factors, including stockpiling last year, Covid lockdowns across Europe and businesses adjusting to our new trading relationship” was the reason for the 75.5% reduction in food and drink exports.

 

Irish Sea border trade service 'gradually improving’

In September 2020, the government-funded Trader Support Service (TSS) was set up to help businesses deal with the new customs procedures coming into force from 1 January 2021.

Since then, over 36,000 traders have registered with the TSS, of which 55% are based in Great Britain, 43% in Northern Ireland, and 2% in the Republic of Ireland. The team of 750 advisors have processed 337,000 consignments since January.

Christian Benson, Head of the TSS, said he was “incredibly proud” of what the service has achieved, and noted that it is “gradually improving”. The statement comes after criticism that the TSS sometimes gave confusing and inconsistent advice. In Benson’s reply he also stated that staff training was taking place on a weekly basis, and there was an improvement in how calls were being answered.

Sign up for the Trader Support Service here.

 

Brexit Transition: Moving goods from Great Britain to Northern Ireland

The Cabinet Office have published guidance on moving goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. If your business moves goods from Great Britain to Northern Ireland it’s important you act now to comply with the new rules. The simple guide highlights five key actions you can take now as well as additional guidance and support.

 

GMCC Bitesize Sessions for Businesses

Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce have launched a series of free masterclasses that will be delivered fortnightly from 8 April covering topics such as Export and Import Basics, Brexit, Incoterms. The purpose of these sessions is to provide support and advice to businesses trading internationally during this time of change.

 

USEFUL LINKS:  

GOV.UK Brexit Checker

GC Business Growth Hub EU transition page

GM Chamber of Commerce

CBI UK transition hub

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