Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Freight Association Urges Logistics Groups to Keep Planning for Brexit  

Commons Vote Dismays the Industry Representatives

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Shipping News Feature UK – The vote in the House of Commons last night (March 12) which saw another defeat for the Prime Minister's Brexit Withdrawal Agreement has sent further ripples throughout the logistics industry and bringing an immediate response from the Freight Transport Association (FTA). Today there will be another vote to consider whether a No Deal scenario should be excluded as a possibility which is likely to prove equally contentious.

The rejection of the Withdrawal Agreement by Parliament means that FTA has doubled down on its advice to logistics operators and importers and exporters to prepare for a No Deal outcome. As further debates and votes take place in the House of Commons over the coming days, FTA is advising those businesses responsible for keeping Britain trading to keep planning for what it considers the worst-case outcome for logistics and supply chains – that No Deal Brexit.

The FTA is concerned that businesses must be ready in order that that raw materials, goods and services continue reach those who need them with limited delays. With only 13 working days left until the UK’s planned departure from the EU, time is running out to make these arrangements. Pauline Bastidon, Head of Global and European Policy, FTA, commented:

“Managing to keep things going in the face of continuous uncertainty and the prospect of significant and sudden changes in regulatory requirements is not a menial task. Logistics and supply chain managers in the UK now face what is possibly their biggest challenge in almost a generation.

The reintroduction of customs formalities and food safety checks for trade with the EU, the restrictions placed and red tape imposed on transport operators, and the significant cost of reorganizing the way we do logistics and manage supply chains should not be underestimated.

The challenge for our members will be to turn sometimes incomplete government procedures into workable business processes to keep supply chains running in an efficient way – in less than 13 working days! This is not a trivial job, and the scale of the challenge should not be underestimated”.

Photo: The House of Commons decision was not entirely unexpected.

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