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Free trade agreement is not a panacea

03 November 2020 / Simon Sutcliffe
Issue: 4767 / Categories: Comment & Analysis
Post-Brexit uncertainty

Key points

  • The UK replaces the Union Customs Code with the Taxation (Cross-border Trade) Act 2018.
  • Problems with who is legally permitted to make customs declarations on export and import.
  • Businesses may have to employ an indirect representative.
  • Government focus seems to be on exporting goods.


Many businesses are being told by the government to prepare for an Australia style model trading arrangement after the apparent stalemate in the ninth round of UK-EU of trade talks (as was the case at the time of writing). While this moniker is likely to be designed to appear more palpable to the UK public it demonstrates the persistence with simplistic messages that are unfortunately undermining the valid and valuable questions raised by traders and advisers alike.


The preparations and negotiations surrounding the UK’s exit from the transition period revolves around...

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