UK ready to cut most tariffs to zero

March 13, 2019 4:13 pm

Tariffs will be cut to zero on 87% of imports as part of a temporary no-deal plan.

We are now preparing for a no-deal Brexit, a default position for shippers operating UK-continental European supply chains, following the government’s overwhelming defeat in Parliament yesterday.

In an attempt to prevent a £9bn price shock to business and consumers, the government today set out its long-awaited tariff regime in the event of a no-deal Brexit on 29 March.

With the tariffs taking effect on 29 March, there will be goods currently in transit that would be liable to the increased charges.

This announcement also means that we finally have insights into the EU trade agreements that will apply after Brexit and the appropriate 10-digit commodity codes that will now apply to many products.

Please contact us directly if you think you may be impacted by these developments and have concerns or questions.

The tariffs will not apply in Northern Ireland, fuelling fears it could become a back-door route to Britain.

Goods from the EU are currently tariff-free, but in the case of a no-deal Brexit, World Trade Organization taxes would have been the default position without this intervention.

The trade minister, George Hollingbery, said. “We will set the majority of our import tariffs to zero while maintaining tariffs for the most sensitive industries.”

The new tariff schedule would apply from 11pm on 29 March in the event of a crash out of the EU with no deal and would be in place for up to 12 months.

In Ireland, goods could travel freely from the republic into Northern Ireland without tariffs or customs checks as part of a “strictly temporary, unilateral approach” designed to avoid a hard border.

GOVERNMENT GUIDANCE: Check temporary rates of customs duty on imports after EU Exit

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