A former senior civil servant in control of Brexit planning has warned some British companies might “hand over importing” because of new guidelines carried out within the new 12 months.
Philip Rycroft, who was everlasting secretary on the Division for Exiting the European Union (DExEU) between 2017 and 2019, mentioned the adjustments that got here into play on January 1 will trigger “teething issues”, with some sectors hit tougher than others.
The information comes as Boris Johnson vowed to “maximise the advantages of Brexit” in 2022.
The Prime Minister marking a 12 months because the post-Brexit free commerce take care of the European Union got here into drive, mentioned the Authorities would “go additional and sooner” to make the most of the “monumental potential that our new freedoms convey”.
However with the introduction of latest limitations to commerce with the bloc, Mr Rycroft mentioned some companies might determine it “isn’t well worth the trouble”.
The adjustments in place from January 1 imply that importers should make a full customs declaration on items coming into the UK from the EU or different international locations.
Merchants are now not capable of delay finishing full import customs declarations for as much as 175 days, a measure that was launched to deal with the disruption of Brexit.
There are separate provisions in place for commerce with the island of Eire.
Mr Rycroft advised BBC Radio 4’s PM programme the brand new guidelines could be an excessive amount of for some corporations.
“The Federation of Small Companies reckon that solely a few quarter of their members are prepared for this, which is a bit shocking in a manner as a result of they’d clearly had a number of discover that that is coming,” he mentioned.
“However let’s not overlook, they’ve had a reasonably torrid 12 months, most companies, with Covid and every little thing else, so a number of companies gained’t be prepared.
“There shall be teething issues… however the large query is, what number of companies in the end assume: ‘Have you learnt what? That is simply an excessive amount of trouble’, and quit importing? Simply as some companies have already given up exporting as a result of it’s not price it.”
He added: “Companies exporting to the EU from the UK have already confronted these guidelines, clearly, for the perfect a part of a 12 months. So it’s now going to be these companies within the UK that import from the EU (that) have gotten to take care of this, basically, new Brexit forms.
“That is what taking again management of our borders means. It’s going to hit some sectors tougher than others. The foundations are extra difficult for animal merchandise, specifically meals merchandise that include bits of animals, due to all the necessities round that.”
Guidelines on nation of origin paperwork have additionally change into marginally stricter, with declarations needing to be made when items arrive right here.
Mr Rycroft mentioned this shall be “actually difficult” for sure merchandise that “include a lot of totally different bits or substances”.
Requested if the nation is more likely to see rising costs or empty cabinets, he mentioned: “I wouldn’t overdramatise it. I believe on the margins there are new prices, which can in the end need to be borne by the customers.
“So HMRC reckon that the whole value of those new methods shall be one thing like £13 billion a 12 months – that’s some huge cash by any token unfold throughout a giant inhabitants just like the UK, after all, that’s modest will increase in prices by means of the provision chain.
“However on the margins additionally there’ll be some companies, as I mentioned beforehand, (who) assume: ‘Have you learnt what? This isn’t well worth the trouble.’ So there’ll on the margins be a discount in selection as nicely.
“This is the reason the Workplace (for) Price range Accountability reckons that the online affect of this deal on our wealth as a rustic shall be to cut back it by about 4% within the medium time period.
“That’s as a result of commerce between the UK and the EU shall be lots much less free than it was once we had been within the single market.”
The DExEU closed in January 2020, with Brexit negotiations now dealt with by the International Workplace.