Industry leaders call for Brexit transition agreement to be sped up

A joint statement from UK industry leaders has called on the UK and EU to agree transition arrangements for Brexit quickly, after the European Council agreed that enough progress had been made on the central tenets of the departure.

A joint statement from the Confederation of British Industry, Institute of Directors, British Chambers of Commerce, Federation of Small Businesses, and EEF, welcomed the progress made so far.

“It is our collective view that the transition period must now be agreed as soon as possible, to give businesses in every region and nation of the UK time to prepare for the future relationship. Further delays to discussions on an EU-UK trade deal could have damaging consequences for business investment and trade, as firms in 2018 review their investment plans and strategies.

“While our members will be particularly pleased that EU citizens currently living and working in the UK now have more clarity, it’s still essential that an unequivocal commitment on their future rights is made whatever the outcome of negotiations,” they said.

Ian Wright, director general of the Food and Drink Federation, said: “While our valued EU workers have some comfort for Christmas over their future status, we want to see a binding guarantee and for Government to deliver on their promise to create a simple online registration system.

“Also on FDF’s wishlist to Father Christmas is speedy agreement of a status quo transition period, a special solution for Ireland, and securing a comprehensive trade deal with the EU which protects all the benefits and ease of trading we currently enjoy.”
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