FTA calls for new UK government to “rethink” Customs Union exit
The Freight Transport Association (FTA) has called for the new UK government to review the decision to leave the EU Customs Union, “given the confusion caused by the results of the General Election and lack of a clear mandate from British voters”. In a statement issued on Friday (9 June), James Hookham, FTA’s Deputy CEO, said: “After four weeks of campaigning for the General Election, vital time has been lost to prepare for the crucial Brexit negotiations. It is now imperative that that the new government focuses its efforts on supporting the logistics sector to ensure that business can continue to trade efficiently with our EU customers and suppliers.
“Exiting the customs union threatens the imposition of tariffs, border checks, Customs declarations and huge amounts of bureaucracy for the significant number of UK businesses that trade in the EU, and the logistics organisations that deliver it for them. Negotiating a replacement trade deal that avoids these would require a strong and convincing mandate, which the Election has now put into doubt. The importance of frictionless arrangements for UK trade with the EU, particularly with Ireland, means that the decision to leave the customs union should be reviewed as a matter of urgency, and other ways of achieving a positive outcome for Brexit should now be considered.”
The Conservative party failed to secure a majority in the House of Commons in last week’s general election, but Prime Minister Theresa May is forming a new government with the support from the Northern Ireland-based Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).