British Chamber of Commerce claims only half of firms 'ready for end of transition'
According to a new survey, only half of UK firms which trade internationally have completed appropriate risk assessments which flag the weaknesses and potential difficulties that may arise when the Transition Period finishes. The worrying findings indicate a lack of preparedness on the part of companies trading across the UK borders in the face of likely disruption from Brexit. The British Chambers of Commerce carried out the survey examining the levels of awareness of commercial vulnerability and preparedness of these firms and found only 52% had carried out risk assessments.
The BCC have indicated that the low percentage of readiness stems from a lack of clarity from Government, saying that business had 'significant unanswered questions'. Adam Marshall, the BCC's director general, has called on the government to "ramp up engagement with business urgently". The study included input from 527 firms trading internationally from the UK and was carried out between the 17th and 21st August 2020. Major findings from the feedback provided by companies show that companies remain either confused or uninformed (or both) on what rules of origin will apply after the transition period, preventing them and their customers from planning and potentially creating unprecedented new administration and costs. Labelling on food and drink to be sold in the EU and Northern Ireland is as of yet unexplained to these internationally-trading UK businesses. Additionally, very limited guidance has been received by the firms on the movement of goods between Britain and Northern Ireland.
BIVDA is working with the Office for Life Sciences on a series of Brexit readiness webinars and will be updating members shortly.