Tag Archive: EU

  1. Life After Brexit: What Will It Mean For UK Business?

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    As we come to the final throes of Brexit negotiations, there are many questions still left hanging in the air. Extending the deadline in order to solidify agreements has meant lengthening this period of uncertainty, and understandably this has brought about concern for even the most supportive leave voters.

    Fortunately there are some answers we can glean from the information currently available to us. Not all of the expected outcomes of Brexit – whatever they may be – are positive, however they aren’t all expected to be resoundingly negative either. Here are some of the things we’ve learned about the future of business in the UK after Brexit, so you can start preparing now.

    Uneven Spending

    February actually experienced higher spending than predicted. According to The Guardian, official figures from the Office for National Statistics point to a stronger performance than expected.

    This increase in spending has statisticians wondering whether the combination of warm weather and a slight decrease in anxiety about the upcoming Brexit deadline is what has led shoppers to the high street.

    However, despite this increase in spending in February, March saw a sharp decrease according to a CBI survey, illustrating the uncertainty shoppers currently feel. This flip-flopping was explained by Anna Leach, the head of economic intelligence at the CBI “…consumer confidence has been hit by escalating uncertainty over Brexit and concern over the economy’s future.”

    This means that consumers are changing their minds quickly, and are willing and capable of changing them back at a moment’s notice. Take advantage of this with your marketing strategies or provide some much-needed stability in order to allay their fears.

    Trade and Workforce Discussions

    From their actions so far within the negotiations, it is clear that the EU would like to keep the door open for Britain as much as possible. At the forefront of any business owner’s mind are the possible implications for trade, and the knock-on effect immigration limitations may have on finding and retaining an adequate workforce.

    However, according to Trusted Shops, not only are the EU member states continuing to consider making it easier for the UK to cancel its withdrawal (a situation that most likely will not happen, but is still worth mentioning), Theresa May has also made decisions to help EU workers stay in the UK.

    While it’s still unclear what exactly will happen once Brexit reaches its final deadline, it’s encouraging to see that discussions that include the interests of business owners are still open and moving.

    Stronger International Markets

    “Although retailers might be losing out on the exchange rate, they seem to be more than making up for it in volume sales. In fact, PayPal recently announced that small and medium businesses (SMEs) in the UK who sell abroad saw sales go up.” – Alon Eisenberg, Trusted Shops.

    While there is no cast-iron guarantee that our European friends will continue buying from us so eagerly after Brexit, there are other nations that are keen to trade with Britain. New Zealand is already seeking a new deal with us, and of course China is a huge economic force that will become essential to the future of our international trading relationships.

    There have also been rumours of potential tax incentives to drive European businesses to our shores, which will come with its own set of positives and negatives for UK business should it come to pass.

    There is no way to offer solid advice on the future outcome of Brexit, but what we can do is continue to pay attention to the movements of our markets closer to home, and especially in the behaviour of consumers.

    We don’t know what will happen. Whether we reach the perfect deal with the EU, vote in a second referendum, or leave without a deal is undecided, but what we know for sure is that British business is influential. Consumers from the EU and beyond are accustomed to looking at the British market for innovation. This means that potentially, the most vital way to hang on to the market is to continue bringing new trends to light, and leading the way, whether in tech, manufacturing, fashion or retail.

  2. Driving in the EU after Brexit – Our Advice

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    Of all the areas of the law that may affect us in the UK after Brexit, one you may never have considered is changes to driving regulations within the EU. While currently we can drive from the UK to other EU countries, after Brexit there may be changes to the way we enter countries outside of our own.

    Changes to the driving license requirements for all UK drivers after Brexit

    Although currently you can drive anywhere within the EU as long as you have a valid UK driving license, when driving abroad from 29 March 2019, all drivers heading outside of the UK may need a different international driving permit (IDP) to drive abroad.

    This permit will ensure that you are legally able and allowed to drive on non-UK roads, and may form part of the documentation needed for border crossings.

    If the UK leaves the EU under a “no deal” Brexit, extra documentation may also be required for any UK citizens travelling to another European country. Currently the exact documentation required has not been explicitly revealed, but it may include your passport or another form of official ID.

    Driving in the EU as a UK driver after Brexit

    After Brexit there are a number of legal requirements that you may need to take into consideration before heading off in your car to the EU from the UK.Add a GB sticker to your car

    Add a GB sticker to your car

    If you have  GB signifier on your registration plate, you are already covered. However, if your number plate simply has an EU national identifier, you may need to add a GB sticker in order to show that your registration is a UK one.Ensure you are insured

    Ensure you are insured

    The motoring Green Card is your motor insurance evidence, used in countries outside of EU and the Green Card-free zone (including Switzerland and Serbia). In the event of a no deal Brexit, the UK may leave the Green Card-free zone, meaning you will be required to carry your Green Card in order to prove your motor insurance is valid.

    Keep your vehicle registration documents handy

    If you’re travelling outside of the UK for less than 12 months and the UK leaves the EU with no deal, you may be required to carry your vehicle registration documents with you. Read this page on vehicle registration documents to find out more.

    Are you a bus, lorry, goods vehicle or coach driver?

    If you drive between the UK and the EU for work, there is specific information available to you to help understand what may be needed after Brexit. The UKGov website has specific pages relating to drivers who travel between the UK and the EU for work, so please check out the official information for more:

    What to do if you are a UK national living in the EU

    According to the UKGov website, if you are a UK licence holder living in the EU or EEA you should exchange your UK driving licence for a local EU driving licence before 29 March 2019.

    If you don’t exchange your license you may experience delays or setbacks such as:

    • Having to pass a required driving test in the country you live in
    • Longer processing times and delays closer to the Brexit period

    Remember: You can use your EU driving license in the UK, and you can exchange your EU license for a UK one should you wish to do so. Restrictions may apply based on where you passed your test.

    If you need to exchange your UK driving licence for an EU or EEA driving licence, the official advice is to do so as soon as possible to avoid any delays. You can apply to exchange your licence here.

    Keep up-to-date

    We’ve tried to give you as much information as we can on what the laws will be around driving from the UK and the EU after Brexit, however this information is subject to change. This is because different deals or a no deal Brexit will alter the regulations and laws brought in as Brexit develops.

    The government’s Brexit updates website is regularly updated with any changes for your reference and we advise referring to the official UKGov website for in-depth information on any of these developments.

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