Do you currently export with all or some of your international sales focused upon the EU? If that is the case, then after the UK leaves the EU, those firms that trade with the EU will need an economic operator registration and identification (EORI) number to comply with customs rules.
A lot of EU-focused exporters have yet to apply for their EORI – so now’s a good time to prepare for the future. Here’s a link to double-check if you’re all set, or guidance on applying for your EORI – a good thing to get sorted so you can get back to growing your exports. https://www.gov.uk/eori
How BREXIT might affect you
The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) has predicted that BREXIT could lead to tariffs of 4% being imposed on goods traded with the EU – up from zero currently – and that higher trade barriers with the EU would “weigh on exports”. The OBR added this was “not necessarily the most likely outcome” but also “by no means the worst case scenario.” (They might have also added…’we’re covering all of the bases….’)
So what does that potentially mean for UK SME’s?
- Your prices to EU customers could rise by 4%+
- More paperwork and documentation
- A squeeze on margins
- Increased competition?
Painful and frustrating but not exactly new. You are faced with these factors regularly, and you deal with them. In fact, BREXIT might be the perfect trigger to have a good review of your business:
- Maybe a renewed focus upon added-value and differentiation?
- A review of potential cost-savings?
- A review of marketing budgets, products and routes to market – shortening supply-chains, getting closer to customers and suppliers?
- Building a closer relationship, and perhaps an opportunity for renegotiation with international partners?
If you have not done so already, now is the time to really start preparing for BREXIT….starting with that EORI number.
UKBA Consultant Gemma Clarke works with UK SME’s to drive international sales and revenues. If you would be interested in a review of your exporting business and potential, please email email@example.com.