Friday 18 October 2019

UK says 88pc of imports to face no tariffs in event of no-deal Brexit

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Independent.ie Business Desk

Independent.ie Business Desk

The UK published a revised temporary tariff regime on Tuesday to come into force if it leaves the European Union without a deal, saying that 88pc of total imports by value would be eligible for tariff free access.

Seeking to balance the need to keep consumer prices down without destroying domestic producers, the UK also said under a new "exceptional review process" it could make changes to the regime from day one if needed.

"The UK is a free trading nation and British business is in a strong position to compete in an open, free-trading environment," Trade Policy Minister Conor Burns said.

With just 23 days to go before the United Kingdom is due to leave the world's largest trading bloc - and with no divorce deal in sight - Prime Minister Boris Johnson's government is stepping up preparation for a potentially chaotic exit.

London first published a temporary tariff regime before its original leaving date in March, as part of its preparations to leave a bloc it joined in 1973.

The revised plan, which follows feedback from industry, lowers tariffs on trucks, applies tariffs to additional clothing products and adjusts levies on bioethanol to retain support for UK producers of a fuel that is important to critical national infrastructure.

The government has left some protections in place for British producers, for instance carmakers and farmers, while many other industries will face cheaper competition from abroad.

More to follow

Reuters

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