Brexit effect: supermarket shelves in Manchester
Photo: Jon Super / dpa
Supply bottlenecks have led to a rethink in British politics with a view to tightened controls at the borders. Due to the consequences of Brexit and the corona pandemic on supply chains and companies, the British government is postponing controls on imports from the EU by several months again. The aim is to check whether food standards are being adhered to. "The pandemic had longer-term effects on companies, both in the UK and in the EU, than many observers expected in March," said British Brexit representative David Frost.
The British border controls should actually take effect from January 1, 2022, one year after the UK left the EU customs union and internal market.
Complete control of imports in areas such as food and animal products was planned from October 1st.
Full customs declarations should come into effect in January as planned.
But the review of food and animal products, which should serve to protect against disease, will be postponed from January to July next year, according to the information.
Requirements for security declarations are also to be postponed to July 2022.
Problematic supply bottlenecks
For its part, the EU has been carefully scrutinizing goods from Great Britain since January. This, the corona pandemic, bureaucracy and new immigration rules have created delivery problems in the UK. Due to the pandemic and the exit from the EU single market, there is a shortage of truck drivers in the UK, which is causing bottlenecks and therefore delays in supplies, especially in the food sector. As a result and because of rising transport costs, the trade in fresh food in particular has come under pressure.
"We want companies to focus on recovering from the pandemic rather than grappling with new demands at the border," Frost said.
“This is why we have set a pragmatic new timetable for the introduction of full border controls.” Only recently, the UK unilaterally postponed the application of Brexit rules to trade between Northern Ireland and the rest of the country.
Business representatives reacted irritated.
The Association of Food and Beverage Manufacturers FDF criticized the short-term announcement.
Companies had spent a lot of money to be ready on October 1st and would now be "punished".
The UK has also postponed full implementation of rules for mainland trade to Northern Ireland as a result of Brexit.
London is in talks with Brussels on the implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol.
This stipulates that no customs controls will be introduced between the British province of Northern Ireland and the EU member Ireland.
Instead, there should be controls between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
kig / afp / dpa-AFX