Prepare for a no-deal Brexit says government

London, UK: Businesses that trade with the EU need to take steps now to prepare for the possibility of a no-deal Brexit, a government minister has warned.

Financial Secretary to the Treasury Mel Stride told the BBC’s Today programme “there is a call to action now”.

“Those who are importing or exporting into and out of the EU 27, in the unlikely event that there is a no-deal at the end of March, will need to take certain steps. They need to do that now,” he said.

Stride said businesses needed to “get a customs agent on board” or “look at software they can use to make sure (of) their import and export declarations”.

He said firms should register for an Economic Operators Registration and Identification Number (EORI number) – a system of unique identification numbers used by customs authorities throughout the European Union.

Businesses should also be prepared to pay custom duties in the event of a no-deal Brexit, he warned.

The latest HMRC update marks a shift in tone, with businesses being urged to take action now.

The new version of the HMRC partnership pack also includes details about government funding for new IT systems and staff training, which is available to customs brokers, customs intermediaries and traders.

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