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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/partnership-pack-preparing-for-a-no-deal-eu-exit/how-this-pack-will-help-you-prepare-for-a-no-deal-scenario
About this partnership pack
This pack provides a high-level guide or links to processes and procedures that are likely to apply to cross-border activity between the UK and the EU in a no deal scenario. It also links you to more detailed sector-specific guidance.
Leaving the EU with a deal remains the government’s top priority. This has not changed.
However, a responsible government must plan for every eventuality, including a no deal scenario. We are intensifying and accelerating no deal planning to ensure we are fully prepared.
We have published extensive advice on the steps that businesses and citizens may need to take to prepare for our exit from the EU. We have taken a number of steps to ensure people and businesses are prepared for a no deal scenario. This includes:
- publishing more than 100 pages of guidance for businesses on processes and procedures at the border in a no deal scenario
- contacting 145,000 businesses who trade with the EU, telling them to start getting ready for no deal customs procedures
- advising hundreds of ports, traders, pharmaceutical firms and other organisations that use the border about potential disruption so they can get their supply chains ready
- making £8 million available to help private customs intermediaries and traders increase their capacity and train employees to prepare for a no deal scenario
- providing an additional £410 million to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) to allow it to maintain its focus on EU Exit preparations
- approving the transition of a trade agreement with Switzerland
- signing 5 civil nuclear agreements, including 2 safeguards agreements, with the International Atomic Energy Agency
- announcing the conclusion of 10 new aviation agreements, including with the United States and Canada
- bringing forward legislation that takes account of different scenarios including the European Union (Withdrawal) Act, the Nuclear Safeguards Act, the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act, the Haulage Permits and Trailer Registration Act, and the Taxation (Cross-border Trade) Bill
Extensive preparation under way
Extensive work to prepare for a no deal scenario has been underway for almost 2 years and we are taking necessary steps to ensure the country continues to operate smoothly from the day we leave.
In December, the Cabinet agreed to proceed with the government’s next phase of no deal planning. This means we are setting in motion our remaining no deal plans. We recommend that businesses and individuals now also ensure they are prepared and enact their own no deal plans as they judge necessary.
Our objective is to minimise disruption by taking unilateral action to prioritise continuity and stability. Stability in a no deal scenario partly depends on the EU taking a similar, non-disruptive, approach to planning.
Choosing to maintain continuity would not stop us from taking advantage of the opportunities presented by our exit from the EU over time, but we would do so in an orderly way.
We expect that our no deal plans will not be required, but will prepare responsibly to ensure the smoothest exit in all outcomes.
The government will work closely with industry to ensure that cross-border activity continues to be conducted in a way that minimises delays and additional burdens for legitimate trade while robustly ensuring compliance. The continuity approach does not mean that everything will stay the same, but the priority is maximising stability at the point of departure through the government’s action.
Upholding the Belfast Agreement
The UK government is clear that in a no deal scenario we must respect our unique relationship with Ireland, with whom we share a land border and are co-signatories to the Belfast Agreement.
The UK government has consistently placed upholding the Agreement and its successors at the heart of our approach.
It enshrines the consent principle on which Northern Ireland’s constitutional status rests. We recognise the basis it has provided for the deep economic and social cooperation on the island of Ireland. This includes north-south cooperation between Northern Ireland and Ireland, which we’re committed to protecting in line with the letter and spirit of Strand 2 of the Agreement.
The Irish Government has indicated it would need to discuss arrangements in the event of no deal with the European Commission and EU countries. The UK would stand ready in this scenario to engage constructively to meet our commitments and act in the best interests of the people of Northern Ireland, recognising the very significant challenges that the lack of a UK-EU legal agreement would pose in this unique and highly sensitive context.
It remains, though, the responsibility of the UK government, as the sovereign government in Northern Ireland, to continue preparations for the full range of potential outcomes, including ‘no deal’. As we do, and as decisions are made, we’ll take full account of the unique circumstances of Northern Ireland.
Working in partnership with you
As intermediaries and trade bodies who work with UK businesses, the role that you can play in helping the government reach out to businesses and individuals is crucial.
You understand the customers, members and clients that you represent and you can provide insight, knowledge and channels to improve how many businesses receive these messages and how well they respond to them.
This partnership pack and links to guidance will help you support businesses and individuals to prepare if we exit the EU without a deal.
It explains or links to:
- how trade, processes and regulations at the UK border will change after 29 March 2019
- what traders, businesses and individuals operating at the UK border will need to do from 29 March 2019
You can use it for your own contingency planning and to help your customers, members and clients to:
- think about how they will need to adapt their activities to comply with new systems, processes and controls
- assess the impact of any changes on their business
- consider whether they need to recruit and train additional staff
- stay up-to-date with these changes by registering for email alerts. Follow the link, add your email address, select ‘Submit’, select ‘Add subscription’ and choose ‘EU Exit’ then select ‘Submit’.
We look forward to working with you and getting your feedback on what you think customers need.
Where to go for more information
We have published extensive advice on the steps that businesses and citizens may need to take to prepare for our exit from the EU.
Businesses and the wider public should visit the Prepare for EU Exit campaign site to access the information they need.
Businesses can register for our email update service. Select ‘business help and education emails’, then ‘EU Exit’.
Information on how to trade with countries outside of the EU (including details on customs procedures, excise rules and VAT) is on GOV.UK.
For information about starting to import, go to GOV.UK, then select ‘Importing from non-EU countries’.
For information about starting to export, go to GOV.UK, then select ‘Export goods outside the EU’.
You can read general information about EU Exit, including the Article 50 process, negotiations, and announcements about policy changes as a result of EU Exit.
All technical notices are published on GOV.UK.
You can also find information about technical notices and other resources in this partnership pack or the links to sector-specific guidance.
If you have ideas for additional resources, or if you want to discuss your own plans for communications, please contact us.