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Launching a New Business? Here Are the Brexit Challenges You Need to Be Aware Of

Brexit Changes

We have all been through so much thanks to the COVID pandemic over the course of the last year and a half. The amount of hard work, ingenuity and sacrifice it has taken to simply make it through to this point is incalculable and we all deserve a break. For anyone thinking about launching a new business during the pandemic, it has been a white-knuckle ride while waiting to see what state the marketplace would be in if and when things got better.

Well, things do seem to be getting better, in relation to the pandemic at least. The UK government has rolled back almost all of its COVID-19 restrictions and companies across all sectors are open for business. Of course, we all know how quickly the wind can change and if we have learned one thing during the pandemic, it’s that the restrictions can come back, and the government can change its mind. The rising case numbers and the Delta variant are both good reasons for being a little cautious if you are thinking about abandoning all the safety measures that you currently have in place.

But this article is not about the pandemic, it’s about Brexit. It has become abundantly clear over the last couple of years that even though the deal has been done, there are still more speedbumps to come on our road forward. Coronavirus certainly did not make things any easier, but there are several Brexit-specific issues that you need to be aware of if you are planning on launching a new business in the second half of 2021. Here are just a few.

 

Exports to the EU Are Down

One of the most immediately apparent effects of Great Britain leaving the EU is that demand for exports to the continent went way down. While there has been a little improvement since those alarming early days, experts are saying that we should not expect to see them return to their previous levels.

Now, part of this is due to bureaucracy. With the UK leaving the EU, the amount of paperwork required for the passage of goods between the two locations increased hugely. It is also down to increased costs, which is bringing profit margins for UK businesses down as well as making it less appealing for EU companies to buy from the UK. This situation may improve with time but if you’re launching now, you need to be aware of this.

 

There Are Fewer People for Necessary Jobs

This issue did not really surface until recently when the UK lifted lockdown restrictions and businesses started hiring again. What they found was that many essential jobs, from crop harvesters to restaurant chefs, were struggling to find qualified people to fill those roles. Part of this is due to the pandemic. There are still a lot of people out there who are shielding or who are otherwise unable to return to work for health reasons. But Brexit has absolutely played a part. Many EU citizens living and working in the UK have relocated to other EU countries or have returned home. The paperwork required to apply for settlement status is still coming in for a lot of criticism, and as a result, businesses are having to work harder to bring the right people in. One solution for your business is to take the initiative. Easy As HGV specialises in business-to-business HGV and CPC training, with training courses that can be tailored to meet your needs.

 

COVID Restrictions May Differ

We hate to bring it back to the pandemic, but something that new businesses should be aware of is that the UK and the EU member states currently have different approaches to the pandemic. We all remember the scenes at Dover in December when 3000 lorry drivers were stuck on their way to Calais because the French border was temporarily closed to anyone coming from the UK without a negative COVID-19 test.

That situation was resolved relatively quickly but the impact it had was clear to everyone. If you are launching a business that relies on importing or exporting goods to and from the EU, then you need to be flexible enough to plan for any delays, and you need to make sure that you are taking every possible step to allow for the smooth passage of your goods.

 

There May Be More Problems That Will Arise

Finally, it is very important to note that some of the issues that you will be facing as a result of Brexit may not have shown their face yet. It may be hard to believe given how much the process has been in the news for the last couple of years, but you can bet good money that there will be more problems to come.

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