Chamber’s Brexit warning to Cumbrian businesses

Date: Thursday 14th March 2019

CUMBRIA Chamber of Commerce has taken the unprecedented step of writing to all businesses on its database to urge them to step-up preparations for a no-deal Brexit.

The personal letter from Chamber chief executive Rob Johnston warns that any business that imports from or exports to the EU needs to take immediate measures to be ready.

He said: “We are concerned that businesses might be misled by reports that MPs have ruled out a no-deal Brexit.

“It remains the legal default position unless Parliament either approves a withdrawal agreement or revokes Article 50 to stay in the EU permanently. It could happen on 29th March.

“In that event, customs declarations, export documents and Certificates of Origin will be required for EU trade.

“We know from our recent Brexit-preparedness survey that many Cumbrian business simply aren’t ready.

“Our biggest concern is that thousands of businesses have yet to apply for an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number.

“This will be needed to import from or export to the EU. It typically takes three days to get an EORI number although that may increase if demand soars.”

The letter sets out the steps businesses should take and directs them to the Brexit Insight section on the Cumbria Business Growth Hub website.

Rob added: “This is one of the most comprehensive resources for Brexit planning available anywhere. It’s updated daily and I’d urge all businesses to take a look.”