Tag Archives: Brexit On Ireland

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Brexit and your Supply Chain

As you know by now, European President Jean-Claude Juncker had a meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May last Friday morning to agree a historic deal defining the terms of Britain’s divorce from the EU. If all that was agreed on December 8th comes to pass, the UK has essentially committed to a soft Brexit.

Ireland has done well in Phase 1 of the Brexit negotiations, including preserving the Common Trade Area, protecting the Good Friday Agreement and, crucially, obtaining a guarantee that there will be no hard border. It is now for the European Council to decide today if sufficient progress has been made to allow the negotiations to proceed to Phase 2, which is a significant step forward in the process leading towards UK withdrawal from the EU in March 2019. It is expected that a transition period would last two years ensuring Britain will remain part of the customs union and single market (including being subject to EU law) until 2021.

Thereafter, the risks and unknowns for your business need to be carefully considered. Most proactive businesses have started to document Brexit assumptions within their Brexit action plans, supporting their planning and strategy work. Whether importing directly or indirectly from the UK, the impacts to your operating model, supplier base, cost base and working capital requirements needs to de analysed, to understand where the areas of greatest risk are (so as to develop suitable mitigating actions to reduce the impact of Brexit on your business).

 

Specifically focusing on your supply-base and imports, can you answer the following 5 questions to identify risks and resilience steps for your business?

 

  1. What suppliers will impact the business most if they cannot supply you tomorrow?

 

  1. Do you know what % of your goods and services are coming directly or indirectly from the UK?

 

  1. Have you researched alternative non-UK suppliers?

 

  1. Are there contracts, licenses or regulations restricting your global sourcing strategies?

 

  1. Are you aware of the potential additional costs to import from Europe in terms of hubbing, logistics partners, Minimum Order Quantities plus the impact on cash flow?

 

As Arvo have been participating in Enterprise Ireland’s Brexit Roadshows recently, let us know today how we can help build resilience into your supply chain for Brexit (& other Political, Economic & Technological events that may cause risks for your business in future).

Brexit & Your Supply Chain

Was 2016 Bizarre for you or is it the start of evolutionary times? With Leicester, Trump and Brexit, we can safely state that 2016 was turbulent, with similar excitement expected in 2017 due to Drones, Blockchain, IoT, French/German Elections, plus the true fallout from Brexit and Trump politics etc.

Focusing on Brexit for now and the potential impacts to your business, the people of Britain voted for a British exit, or Brexit, from the EU in a historic referendum on Thursday June 23 2016. This has resulted in 2 potential outcomes for the UK (with downwind impacts for Ireland);

1. Hard-Brexit

Essentially, it all boils down to trade – if the UK does not agree a deal that continues “tariff-free” trading with the EU single market, then it will be seen as having opted for a hard exit.

2. Soft Brexit

In direct contrast to a hard Brexit, a soft one would not involve giving up most of our current free trading arrangements when the UK leave the EU.

Unfortunately, it seems like a Hard Brexit is most likely while to-date the most visible outcome has been the volatile value of Sterling (with a noticeable ‘bounce’ since November)

So what can we expect?

1. The UK border agencies could charge import duties and also collect VAT on all imports.
2. The transfer of goods, services, people and data to/from the UK will likely become more complicated and costly – more of an inconvenience rather than a major barrier to trade
3. UK growth is expected to slow considerably in 2017, which will place increased pressure on the UK economy

 

As in all situations, this will impact some industries and businesses more than others. If you supply to, or import from, one or more of the following sectors, you can expect complications and change in your supply base from 2017;

 

As experts on the Lisbon Treaty (since we read it twice!), a country leaving the European Union has 2 years in which to negotiate a withdrawal agreement. This time-frame permits preparation in 2017 for the Brexit impacts of 2018, while businesses should invest in Procurement so as to;

 

1. Reduce your supply-chain risk if overly dependent on UK suppliers
2. Develop internal expertise to deal with customs, visas, tariffs, VAT, currencies etc.
3. Provide internal Category, Contract and Vendor Management expertise (3 investments which should be considered irrespective of Brexit)
4. Prepare for global sourcing events and opportunities
5. Provide Procurement Training, so as to invest in your buyers to improve their mindset, skillset and toolset

 

As always, please do not hesitate to contact us with your Brexit and Procurement queries.