21 June 2017
British Ports Association’s Policy Manager Mark Simmonds today highlighted that the Queen’s speech contained few surprises and that new customs arrangements should prioritise trade facilitation and replicate the benefits of the EU Customs Union.
Reacting to the Government’s legislative program, he said:
“The Prime Minister has targeted ‘frictionless trade’ and to achieve this it’s vital that any controls are carried out, wherever possible, away from the frontier to avoid disrupting flows of traffic.”
Continuing, he commented on the new Customs Bill saying…
“Whatever the outcome the Government’s post-customs union framework must prioritise trade and passenger facilitation. Any post-Brexit customs scenario that involves additional inspections at the frontier will have a substantial impact on trade.
“We have real concerns about border delays, congestion and increased costs for traders if this is not done right.”
And regarding the Fisheries Bill he said
“Any new fisheries management regime must learn lessons from the failures of the CFP. Given the complexity of UK-EU supply chains, a priority for Government in negotiations is ensuring access to market for both raw and processed seafood.”
“It is vital that fishing is not used as a bargaining chip, and there is continued financial support for industry development and innovation, post-Brexit.”
The BPA and the ports industry are now looking forward to working with Government on the UK’s future customs and trading arrangements in the coming months.