Leading North East exporters have been given detailed, practical advice on trading with Europe ahead of the Brexit negotiations starting today (19 June 2017).
Organised by the North East England Chamber of Commerce’s international team, the event held at the Evolve Business Centre, Sunderland heard Hirohito Imakoji, Liebherr Sunderland Works, set out his company’s approach to anticipating potential changes.
Brian Dakers, Chamber international trade manager said: “Our event gave businesses the first-hand hand experience of Liebherr and their view on issues such as the World Trade Organisation (WTO)’s possible trade outcomes. Some of the challenges identified by companies included the possibility of tariffs being imposed on EU imported goods, which are currently tariff-free, when they are being used to create different products and then exported out of the UK.
“The businesses said the information at the event particularly from Liebherr, acted as a catalyst for them and brought up several issues that they need to consider. In particular in relation to the possible implications on cash flow, if there are not only tariffs to pay but also subsequent paperwork, that could possibly impact upon the supply chain.”
Also speaking at the launch was Keith Robe, a customs specialist working for the Chamber helping members achieve Authorised Economic Operator status, which has been mentioned repeatedly by Government as one of the key ways of achieving frictionless trade post Brexit.
Manufacturers who attend the event included companies from around the region including Stockton-based Lindy Electronics, Darchem from Tees Valley, Kromek from County Durham, Haltwhistle-based Agma and Schlegel in Newton Aycliffe.
As the negotiations begin the Chamber will also be campaigning on five key priorities for the region to ensure it continues to be a Global North East. They are:
- A new trading relationship with the EU that gives exporters frictionless and un-bureaucratic access to European markets.
- A fair migration system that allows North East businesses to compete for global talent to support growth aspirations.
- An emphasis on economic partnerships and collaboration with countries across the globe which focuses on the business community and innovation.
- A commitment to ensure that the North East does not suffer from the withdrawal of EU development funding, which supports vital economic and social investment.
- A positive and consultative approach to negotiations that causes minimum disruption to business interests, particularly for those who trade overseas.