Brexit Planning. Preparing for a "No Deal" Brexit 

There is still uncertainty around what Brexit will mean and planning for a “No-Deal” scenario is important right now, so as to safeguard the continuity of your business, regardless of the Brexit final outcome.  
Businesses that buy and sell from the UK should have contingency plans in place which will need to be flexible to cope with a variety of possible outcomes. In the event that the UK exits the EU without a deal, many Irish businesses will need to apply the same processes to UK trade that apply when trading with the rest of the world (outside the EU). 

Here are some of the areas you should consider, particularly if you import or export goods to the UK and haven’t had the need to complete the various forms before. The checklist also considers general implications of a “no deal” Brexit. 

Movement of Goods 

  • Register(unless you already have) for an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number which is necessary for importing and exporting.

  • Consider an agent to help with completing import/export forms or DIY the forms.

  • Contact your haulage company to check whether additional information is needed so they can make safety and security declarations for you.

  • Export rules are specific by sector so review for information about customs, and procedures when importing and exporting goods in a post Brexit scenario.:

  • You may choose to register for“Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) status which enables “Trusted” businesses simplified customs procedures.

  • Review the slide presentation prepared by Revenue Commissioners, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and HSE Environmental Health as this outlines Customs and other procedures when trading with a 3rd Country (UK).

  • The Government have acknowledged that a “no-deal” scenario may affect the working capital of many businesses and have outlined financial supports for business on the Department of Foreign Affairs website:

  • Consider forming a company in the UK. Talk to us about how we can assist with UK company formations.

Supply Chain Analysis 

  • In the event of “no-deal” all exports and imports to the UK will be subject to tariffs under the rules of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). You will need to identify where “inputs” come from and which categories of product they fall into so you can work out the tariffs that will apply.

  • Review WTO rates online and check the tariff data for your business. See:

Product Standards and Compliance

  • The European Committee for Standardization (CEN) and the European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENLEC) are the leading providers of voluntary European Standards and related products and services for the benefit of businesses,consumers and other standard users in Europe. They are independent of the EU.They provide a single model, whereby each European standard is adopted identically as a national norm.

  • The British Standards Institute (BSI) is a member and will remain so after Brexit (this was agreed 23 November 2018). You should regularly review the situation for updates with reference to your industry sector.

Contracts with UK Companies

  • If you currently have business agreements with UK companies these may need to be redrafted to cover off areas such as customs arrangements, import duties, how VAT is accounted for,definitions such as “Territory”, dispute resolution and unanticipated administration as a result of Brexit. Consult your lawyer for advice to avoid any potential issues sooner rather than later.

  • Copyrights, Intellectual Property(IP) and trademarks: At this point in time it is not clear if EU trade marks would be applicable in the UK post Brexit. If you own intellectual property rights contact your lawyer on protecting your IP post Brexit.

  • Management of currency risk. There has been a downward trend in the pound to Euro rate post the vote in 2016.

This checklist should not be relied upon as comprehensive guidance but as a reminder of some of the key planning questions and resources for businesses in the event of a “no deal” Brexit. 
No responsibility for loss occasioned to any person acting or refraining from action as a result of the material in this document can be accepted by the authors or mbsl Limited.