What Brexit means for your business

Following the UK’s vote to exit the European Union, we are left with a large degree of uncertainty on what will now follow. However, there are a few things we know that will and won’t happen in the aftermath of the result.

In the immediate term, we can expect some degree of currency fluctuation in Sterling and possibly other currencies, so businesses with exposure to Sterling should consider how they will manage this. There may also be some market volatility with knock-on consequences for investments and pensions and it is unclear how long this period of uncertainty will last.

However, it is important to highlight that there should be no immediate impact as negotiations for a UK exit from the European Union are likely to take a considerable amount of time. For example, pending the outcome of any negotiations there will be no introduction of tariffs and there will be no immediate introduction of a hard border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. Free movement of people should also not be impacted in the immediate aftermath.

What Can You Do?

Businesses should begin a process of assessing the impact of Britain leaving the EU on their operations and develop a contingency framework to make any necessary adjustments over the coming years as the terms of a negotiated exit become clearer or to assist us in raising matters of which negotiating teams should be made aware or seek alternative solutions. Issues to consider may include:

  • Update generic contingency plans
  • Analysis of business models and differences arising if trading directly, using branch structure, commissionaire structure or UK subsidiary
  • Identify currency exposures 
  • Analysis of business lines to identify potentially exposed offerings. For example (products & services which are typically liable to customs for non-EU trading, products and services where regulatory environment may change, impacts of changes in employment laws, identify supply chain issues such as transport routes used for sales and purchases)
  • We suggest business engage with your local Chamber to highlight substantial areas of particular concern where we may be able to feed suggestions / commentary to the Government negotiators

Please note that this information is not advice, and should not be treated as such. If you have any specific questions about any matter you should consult your legal or other professional services providers

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