A UK parliamentary committee has called the government’s plans to prepare the Border Force for Brexit ‘completely unconvincing’. The body believes that current planning ‘would be incredibly damaging to the UK economy and completely unacceptable to the country’.
The committee’s report warns that there could significant border disruption unless urgent action is taken. It adds that the government “should aim to swiftly agree transitional arrangements with the EU which involve no practical change to customs operations either in the UK or the EU, and especially at the Irish border.”
Freight and logistic companies fear a ‘nightmare scenario” and total chaos if significant time is not given to traders to transition to any new customs arrangements. There are particular risks if no deal is secured in March 2019, which would require substantial changes in the volume and processes for customs checks to take place overnight, the report warns.
UK trade body the Food Storage and Distribution Federation, said last week that delays to the 14,000 trucks crossing the Channel on a daily basis could cause severe food supply problems.