23 November 2020
Whilst discussions on an EU/UK FTA continue, the Government also continues its communications programme with companies on preparations for 1st January 2021.
Steve Oldfield, DHSC Chief Commercial Officer published a letter last week to NHS medicines and medical product suppliers to update on plans and preparations ahead of the end of the transition period, which you can access via the link below.
In the letter, Steve Oldfield states, “at 11pm on 31 December 2020, new border and customs procedures will apply for all goods entering the UK from the EU. The UK will implement border controls in a staged approach which will help to reduce potential for disruption at the border. However, the UK government does not have control over the checks that EU member states impose at the EU border and the biggest potential cause of disruption are traders not being ready for controls implemented by EU member states on 1 January 2021. Simply put, if traders, both in the UK and EU, have not completed the right paperwork, their goods will be stopped when entering the EU and disruption will occur. Therefore, it is essential that traders act now and get ready for new formalities.
The government’s Reasonable Worst Case Scenario (RWCS) planning assumptions indicate the flow rate at the short straits could reduce to 60% to 80% of normal levels after the transition period, with the most significant disruption occurring in the first 3 months of 2021. While this is not a forecast or a prediction, this emphasises the need for the department to continue to work with you to implement the ‘multi-layered approach’ to mitigate against the risk of supply disruption”.
In addition to this letter we would draw your attention to the Borders and Protocol Delivery Group’s very comprehensive and detailed FAQs for traders which you can also access via a link below.