The government in the United Kingdom has published a series of notes advising people and businesses how to protect themselves from the potential disruption of a ‘no deal’ exit from the European Union.
The documents released Thursday are the first in a series of 80 technical notices that are expected over the coming weeks and would include various recommendations from stockpiling drugs to new paperwork for trade.
The notes issued Thursday showed that companies trading with Europe would face new paperwork for customs and safety in case Britain fails to reach a deal with the EU on how it would leave the bloc by March.
Businesses will also be required to apply customs and tax rules for goods traded with the EU in a system that is similar to current mechanism for moving goods between Britain and countries outside the EU. The companies will also have to pay Value Added Tax in advance, the government’s guidance said.
Brexit minister Dominic Raab delivered a speech to mark the release of the papers, saying his country was still hopeful that it could reach a divorce agreement with the EU. He added, however, that the government was trying its best to be prepared for a no-deal scenario
“I’m confident that a good deal is within our sights. That remains our top priority, that remains our overriding priority,” Raab said, adding that Britain wanted to make sure that it “goes from strength to strength, even in the unlikely event that we do not reach a negotiated deal with the European Union.”
More people have come out over the past weeks warning that there is a high chance for Britain to fail to reach an agreement with the EU.
The skepticism deepened in early July after Prime Minister Theresa May announced her plans for negotiating a Brexit deal. The plans caused huge controversy in Britain as it caused two senior ministers in May’s cabinet to resign while EU negotiators have also rejected key proposals from the so-called white paper.