Big Tariff Cuts and No Irish Border Checks in the Event of No Deal Brexit

With Prime Minister Theresa May struggling to push her Brexit deal through the Parliament, it is increasingly looking likely that on the 29th of March this year, the United Kingdom will exit the European Union without a deal in place. However, in case of a ‘no deal’ Brexit, there are going to be a range of problems for the country and many experts have warned that the country could come to a standstill. In light of that, the British authorities have now announced that in a temporary move to keep prices stable, import tariffs are going to be eliminated completely for most goods. In addition to that, the border between Northern Ireland and Ireland is also going to be kept free from customs checks.

As of now, 80% of the imports into the UK are not charged any tariffs, but in the unprecedented event of a no deal Brexit, it would be raised to 87% as a temporary measure. This plan, while temporary, will be in place for 12 months and would help to keep prices down, while also ensuring that the manufacturing sector in the country does not go into a meltdown. Not having access to essential supplies for even a day is a nightmare for any manufacturing outfit and consequently, can lead to significant job losses. It is believed that these measures will help in keeping the wheels of the economy turning while also saving thousands of jobs. While it is true that import tariffs are going to be removed for a varied range of items, some British industries will remain protected from imports. Those include the meat industry, dairy products and poultry.

Despite these measures, the situation for the country is not going to improve significantly for many, and some industries are particularly worried about the prospects of a ‘no deal’ Brexit. For instance, according to the new plan, the imports from the EU will continue to be charged, and some of the more popular products are food and cars. Once that happens, the price of cars is going to skyrocket, and the chief of one of the car manufacturing industry groups has said as much. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders chief stated, “No policy on tariffs can come close to compensating for the disruption, cost and job losses that would result. It’s staggering that we are in this position with only days until we are due to leave.” 

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