British firms say they urgently need clarity to limit chaos of a no-deal Brexit
Business leaders have demanded the prime minister answer 20 crucial questions before the 29 March deadline to prevent a chaotic no-deal Brexit.
The British Chamber of Commerce (BCC), the UK business trade body, said that without greater clarity over import and export duties, border controls and customs procedures, Theresa May risked thousands of companies suffering a potentially catastrophic shock when the UK quits the European Union.
Adam Marshall, the BCC’s director general, said British firms could face the biggest change to their terms of trade in over a generation in less than 50 days, “without the information and clarity they need to navigate their forward course”.
The warning came only a fortnight after the BCC said thousands of firms were planning to relocate inside the remaining 27 EU nations to avoid potential hiccups at the border and maintain consistent relationships with customers and suppliers.
Referring to the number of businesses that have publicly triggered plans to move abroad as “the tip of the iceberg”, the organisation said no deal has gone from being “one of several possible scenarios to a firm date in the diary” for its 75,000 members.
A poll by the Institute of Directors (IoD) at the end of last month found that nearly one in three British businesses are planning to relocate some of their operations abroad or have already shifted them to cope with a hard Brexit.