Uncertainty remains after MPs vote against leaving EU without a deal / EU and UK businesses say no deal is a no-win outcome for both sides
A second vote on 12 March 2019 again failed to get Theresa May's deal through parliament, even with the looming 29 March 2019 deadline – see of 16.01.2019. Reacting to the result, the UK's Chemical Industries Association (CIA, London; called it a "storm" for the chemical sector on 13 March. The CIA's chief executive, Steve Elliot, said, "We still have a little time to get this right – especially if this week’s political events lead to a rejection of no-deal and an extension to article 50 – but that time needs to be meaningful if business is to retain confidence in this political process and the UK as a credible investment location."

On the evening of 13 March, members of parliament then voted, by just 312 to 308, against a no-deal Brexit. They will vote this afternoon (14 March) on a delay for the country's departure from the EU. The government could apparently seek an extension of article 50 up to 30 June 2019. There are still a lot of options for what the outcome will be, and the uncertainty remains.

In the case of a no-deal Brexit, the UK government announced that 87% of imports would be tariff-free. It also said there would not be checks at the Irish border.
Cefic fears major disruption of supply chain
With a no-deal Brexit, chemicals registered in the UK for distribution in the EU would not comply with relevant EU legislation (REACH), the European Chemical Industry Council (Cefic, Brussels / Belgium; said in February – see of 01.02.2019. Cefic and 12 other EU and UK trade associations have published a joint statement on the impacts for the European and British economies.

With just a handful of days remaining, European businesses are calling for a no-deal Brexit to be "averted immediately." This will avoid a major disruption of supply chains across industries and protect jobs, the undersigned organisations said, adding that in more than 40 years of economic integration and 25 years of the single market, the EU and UK value chains have become closely intertwined and a no-deal Brexit will lead to chaos. Delays at customs and disrupted supply of all goods will incur significant costs for businesses and governments.

In many areas, companies do not yet know the trading conditions they will be operating in and smaller firms are already experiencing cash flow problems in the face of this uncertainty. "As a matter of urgency, we call on both parties to secure the withdrawal agreement and transition period. This will give businesses time to adapt to the new reality and allow the EU and UK to prepare and agree on their future relationship," the signatories said.

Participating organisations:
  • Cefic
  • UK's CIA
  • BusinessEurope
  • European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA)
  • Eurelectric
  • FoodDrinkEurope
  • FuelsEurope
  • European Association of Metals (Eurometaux)
  • European Steel Association (Eurofer)
  • European Apparel and Textile Confederation (Euratex)
  • Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Eurochambres)
  • EuroCommerce
  • European Aluminium
14.03.2019 [242023-0]
Published on 14.03.2019

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