Impartial guide to life after Brexit launched by Business West as departure day draws near

October 26, 2018
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Business West, the region’s largest business support group, has launched a free up-to-the minute advice and guidance service to help firms get ready for life after Brexit.

Called Trading Through Brexit, it aims to help businesses start planning for the period up to and after the UK leaves the EU next March.  

Business West, which runs Bristol Chamber of Commerce and the Bristol Initiative, says it has become increasingly difficult for businesses to plan for conditions outside the European Union.

Led by Business West director of policy Matt Griffith, pictured, who is an experienced business advisor with expertise in trade negotiations and economic policy, Trading Through Brexit is designed as a one-stop shop for trade-related Brexit advice that businesses can trust.

It will include free, up-to-the minute advice and guidance on the latest planning information as the Brexit negotiations and eventual EU exit unfold. Central to this is a platform that enables businesses to submit burning questions to Business West’s expert team of policy and international trade experts.

Business West has vowed to answer as many questions as possible and share its knowledge through regular updates designed to help firms understand their options and be better prepared for a future outside the EU.

Among questions Matt and his team have already answered for businesses are:

  •          Will I still have to pay VAT after Brexit? If so, how will it change?
  •          What import tariffs could be imposed on my exported products if the UK has not negotiated any trade agreements with the EU or other countries?
  •          Is there a simple checklist I can use to help me understand the steps I should take to prepare for Brexit?

Business West managing director Phil Smith said: “As the Brexit negotiations enter a crucial phase, the level of noise coming out of Brussels and Westminster has reached fever pitch. 

“While opinion and misinformation is everywhere, facts are painfully thin on the ground. Trading Through Brexit has been launched in response to overwhelming demand from the local business community for a one-stop shop where they can access trusted, trade-related Brexit advice.

“Ever since the referendum we have worked closely with businesses to ensure that they understand what resources and plans they may need to have in place to continue to trade whatever the outcome of the Brexit negotiations.

“Our expert policy and international teams have been working tirelessly to provide one on one support and in-depth analysis. The Trading Through Brexit programme pulls together all these elements into a suite of toolkits and resources to ensure that businesses in the region are better Brexit prepared come March 2019.”

Andrew Varga, managing director of Bristol-based safety valve manufacturer Seetru, added: “As a manufacturer that exports more than 60% of what we produce, the referendum vote came as a devastating blow, which left me fearful over the long-term future of the business.

“Business West has helped provide access to civil servants and decision makers and helped give insight into how Brexit could affect my business. Although Brexit is still crowded with uncertainty, the support from Business West gives me a much better sense of the future trading landscape and knowledge that I have a supportive partner in the months and years ahead.”

Businesses can register at www.tradingthroughbrexit.co.uk to submit a question and receive regular emails providing a round-up of key topics raised through questions, trade-related insights and links to relevant content as the negotiations unfold.

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