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Trade in goods after Brexit

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The House of Lords EU external affairs sub-committee has published its report on the impact of tariffs, non-tariff barriers, administration costs, and preferential agreements with third countries on leaving the EU. The key findings of the report are:

  • supplies and components may cross the Channel multiple times during production as part of EU-wide supply chains, meaning tariffs on UK-EU trade in goods could be imposed every time, increasing costs;
  • leaving the EU customs union would be likely to result in a significant additional administrative burden for companies and delays to consignments of goods, incurring additional costs;
  • there may be significant benefits in the UK continuing to participate, where possible, in EU agencies such as the European Medicines Agency and the European Aviation Safety Agency; and
  • the Government should give serious consideration to a transitional agreement, as it begins its negotiations.

The report, ‘Brexit: trade in goods’ is available at This follows the committee’s report in December 2016, ‘Brexit: the options for trade’, which evaluated four main models for future UK-EU trade.