Bank Governor’s warning ‘should be wake-up call’

Bank of England boss Mark Carney has warned that up to 150,000 businesses are not properly prepared for a no-deal Brexit, a warning that should act as a wake-up call, warns RSM.

Commenting on the Governor’s comments, Brad Ashton, international trade partner at RSM said: “The Governor is right to sound the alarm over the lack of business preparedness for a no deal outcome.

“Around 240,000 EU-only UK trading businesses will require an EORI (Economic Operator Registration and Identification) registration number from HMRC in order to make customs declarations in the event of a no-deal Brexit. But there are clearly tens of thousands of small and medium sized businesses that are unprepared.

“For some businesses that are already VAT registered the process for obtaining an EORI can be straightforward. However, for non-VAT registered businesses the process is more complex and time consuming.

“Having already passed one Brexit deadline, there is a danger that a ‘cry wolf’ mentality might be lulling trading businesses into a false sense of security. Apathy or ignorance may also be playing a role. Whatever the reason, the Government must ramp up its communication with affected businesses to ensure that they can continue to trade with their EU customers and suppliers in the event of a no deal.”

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