The lack of progress on the future relationship between the EU and the UK creates uncertainty for shipping companies, Danish Shipping said.
As explained, the time for operational preparations post-Brexit becomes increasingly short, given that no deal was made between the EU leaders at their meeting in Brussels on Friday.
Once again, Brexit was discussed among the EU leaders. The 27 remaining heads of EU states have agreed that progress has been made, but not enough to start negotiations on a future trade relationship.
“As the day of Brexit moves closer without knowing the future trade relationship, it becomes more and more difficult for shipping companies to prepare their commercial operations. Trade agreements require a long process, and this agreement will be no different. Instead of speculating what the relationship will look like, we are working to assist our members to map out and prepare for different scenarios from March 30, 2019,” Casper Andersen, Director EU affairs, Danish Shipping, commented.
For shipping companies, a no deal-scenario will result in cargo waiting for several days for customs clearances, which will in turn cause queues as ports will be a bottleneck between EU and the UK, according to Danish Shipping.
As a consequence, fresh products are at risk of rotting while waiting for the paperwork to go through. Standards on environmental, safety and reporting issues will be unknown from day one as well, Danish shipping added.
During the October summit, there has not been sufficient progress to move on in negotiations and the next assessment of progress has therefore been postponed to December. The delay further shortens the timeline as the UK will have to leave the EU on the night of March 29, 2019.