Barnier warns firms need to have post Brexit supply chains ready

Companies need to have their supply chains ready for when the UK departs the EU on the 29th of March next year, warned Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator.

At the BusinessEurope Day 2018 this week, Barnier said, “The future of our Union is more important than Brexit.”

Barnier talked about the choices that need to be made during the negotiations in the coming year, focusing on the options in a trade deal. He did however emphasise that uncertainty will continue until the final deal is agreed.

“You, as business leaders, also have choices to make in a context of uncertainty.

“The UK will leave the EU on 29 March 2019. That is the only certainty we have at this stage.

“It is therefore important that all businesses analyse their exposure to the UK and are ready to adapt their logistics, supply chains and contracts.

“Of course, the transition period currently under negotiation would give you more time to adapt.

“However, certainty about the transition will only come at the end of the process, with the ratification of the withdrawal agreement by both sides –probably early next year.”

And, he said: “We must not lose sight of the key point: the Single Market is what makes our businesses in Europe strong.”