Monday 24 June 2019

Ibec fears 'cliff edge' on Brexit

Fergal O'Brien. Picture: Gary O' Neill
Fergal O'Brien. Picture: Gary O' Neill
Laura Larkin

Laura Larkin

An extension of the planned post-Brexit transition period beyond 2020 is the only sensible route to protect businesses, a leading industry body has said.

Ibec's director of policy and public affairs, Fergal O'Brien, said businesses were at a loss when it came to planning for a post-Brexit climate as they were "grappling with the same uncertainties as when negotiations commenced".

The complexities of the UK leaving the EU meant it was now "becoming increasingly inevitable that an extended transition period will apply before any new trading, business and legal arrangements come into force", Mr O'Brien said.

He continued: "This is now the only sensible course of action for all parties involved. Current customs and trading procedures will have to continue until EU and UK authorities have alternatives put in place."

Under the current plans, the UK will remain in both the single market and the customs union until the end of 2020.

Tánaiste Simon Coveney has previously said that the transition period may have to be extended in order to avoid a 'cliff-edge' scenario for businesses.

Calling for pragmatism, Mr O'Brien added: "All sides must recognise that any new set of rules and requirements will need realistic timelines before they come into force."

Irish Independent

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