Consequences of Brexit: British people pay much more for tariffs

Status: 13.09.2021 2:33 p.m.

Experts have calculated the specific Brexit costs for British consumers and companies. In the first half of the year alone, they had to pay the equivalent of 2.6 billion euros in customs duties for goods imported from the EU.

Customs duties introduced with Brexit on many imported goods from the EU are a burden for consumers and companies in Great Britain. According to calculations by the accounting firm UHY Hacker Young, a total of 2.2 billion British pounds in customs duties were due from January to July. That is the equivalent of 2.6 billion euros – and over 40 percent more than in the same period of the previous year. The auditors rely on data from the British government.

“Tons of paperwork”

The higher cost puts another strain on the UK economy, which is already suffering the aftermath of the pandemic. Stricter entry rules after Brexit had also increased the shortage of skilled workers. The new import formalities have made importing goods more complicated and time-consuming. “British companies have not been given enough time or help to prepare for the cost of Brexit or the tons of paperwork,” said UHY expert Michelle Dale.

The biggest problems are caused by the so-called “rules of origin”. These lead to customs duties being due on goods from the EU that were originally manufactured outside the Community – at least in part. It can be difficult for businesses to provide sufficient evidence of the origin of goods. Often times, simplicity firms pay the tariffs to avoid delays.

From October there could be further problems with trade with the EU, because then a new import ban on various foods such as chilled minced meat will come into effect. The auditors warned that the result could be long queues at the borders.

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