On Wednesday, 29 March 2017, British Prime Minister Theresa May submitted the United Kingdom’s request to trigger article 50, the legal process launching Britain’s departure from the European Union.
What are the latest expressions of the British manufacturing industry, from the point of view of online overseas trade with the EU?
Manufacturing fears for EU supplies and sales
British manufacturing industry association EEF (Engineering Employers’ Federation) has stated “A loss of access to both the single market and the customs union would condemn the manufacturing sector to a painful and costly Brexit,” according to the Daily Telegraph. “Any suggestion that ‘no deal is better than a bad deal’ is simply unacceptable to an industry that accounts for 45pc of all UK exports. The could mean leaving the EU with no free trade deal in place, trashing companies which rely on trading parts and goods across the EU but could end up facing taxes on those moves”.
Law firm Baker McKenzie said : “The changes involved will require significant additional bureaucratic mechanisms and will add cost to the business of many of our clients, particularly those who move goods between the UK and EU 27. This is a particular issue for complex supply chains in areas like technology and car manufacturing.”
Last weekend, British Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn told ITV’s “Peston on Sunday” “We’re very clear that there has to be unfettered access to the European market, otherwise the threat to jobs in this country is absolutely huge. Most of our manufacturing industries have a European sale and European supply chain in them. And if we don’t maintain this unfettered access then quite clearly those industries are very much at risk.”
Financials and real estate progressing
On the plus side European logistics warehousing was a real estate sector registering more investment since the Brexit vote last June, according to Real Capital Analytics. The firm said that large-scale facilities of more than 50,000sqm registered a record €6bn of deals, according to IPE Real Estate.
Banks and financial firms have also seen growth in the run-up to the triggering of Article 50, according to a study by British employers federation CBI (Confederation of British Industry) and accounting firm PwC (Price Waterhouse Coopers). “It’s great that financial services firms have begun the year with a spring in their step – notwithstanding Brexit uncertainty – with volumes expanding at a robust pace, profitability improving and hiring on the up,” said the CBI’s chief economist Rain Newton-Smith.
Europages is a Europe-wide business directory linking purchasers and suppliers of goods on line.
“Financiers upbeat on economic growth but manufacturers fear rise of borders after Brexit”, DT, Tim Wallace , 27 March 2017
EEF website https://www.eef.org.uk/about-eef