The government also warned that consumers will face slower, more costly credit card payments when they buy EU products, and British citizens living abroad could lose access to payments from their bank accounts.
Dominic Raab, the Brexit secretary insisted that he was “confident that a good deal is in our sights”, as he launched 24 “technical notices” in Westminister on Thursday—telling businesses and the public on how to prepare if no deal was reached.
He stated that the government’s priority was to ensure continuity but the 24 technical notices – the first batch of more than 80 due over the summer – underline the potential impact on daily living in the country, if Britain leaves without a deal in place next March.
With the UK banks more likely to lose access to EU payments systems, the financial services paper warned: “Customers (including business using these providers to process euro payments) could face increased costs and slower processing times for euro transactions. The cost of card payments between the UK and EU will likely increase.”
Customers of UK banks living in the EU “may lose the ability to access lending and deposit services, and insurance contracts”, the paper stated.
Businesses were warned that if the UK leaves without a deal, “the free circulation of goods between the UK and EU would cease.”
Firms would need to fill out customs declarations for goods entering the UK from the EU – and should think about whether they should “engage the services of a customs broker, freight forwarder or logistics provider to help, or alternatively secure the appropriate software and authorisations.”
The technical notices make it clear that Britain expects the EU to start imposing tariffs on UK goods in the event of no deal.
Businesses should “if necessary, put steps in place to renegotiate commercial terms to reflect any changes in customs and excise procedures, and any tariffs that may apply to UK-EU trade”, said the notice on trading.
In other areas, the notices striked a more reassuring note, pointing out that existing regulations covering areas ranging from workers’ rights to the export of dangerous products are due to be transposed into UK law under the EU Withdrawal Act.