The Christmas Eve Brexit deal has been welcomed by traders but full implementation by New Year’s Day is impossible. We now need a phased implementation of this deal for six to nine months.
Businesses need to understand and digest the phonebook-style legal text with over 2,000 pages first. It took the Government years to come to this result. Why are we given now seven days to get on with it? This is too early.
While the zero-tariff trade deal avoids another cost-shock for traders, the lack of guidance of how to deal with the new customs paperwork is a real problem.
New customs rules mean 250 million additional customs declarations will have to be processed by HM Revenue & Customs every year from 2021. We need at least 20,000 more customs agents in the UK to support UK and EU businesses with the new procedures. It will take years until the new process works sufficiently.