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6 months out from Brexit, uncertainty prevails

Being Brexit-ready regardless of the outcome, deal or no-deal, is the only way to minimise the impact on business operations.

What is to be expected come Brexit day March 29, 2019 is uncertain, but the availability of support clinics for Irish businesses is hugely important, more so now now than ever.



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3 September 2018

Brexit is just over six months away, and while there are many supports for Irish producers offered by Bord Bia, there still remains an air of uncertainty and tension over what is to come post-March 29, 2019.

In 2017, the total value of amenity horticulture exports rose to €17.9m, an increase of 9.8% year-on-year. Despite significant currency changes triggered by the Brexit referendum growers of plants, Christmas trees, cut foliage and flowers all managed to maintain or increase exports to Britain and Northern Ireland.

The unwavering strength in exports to Northern Ireland and Britain is a note of positivity but the question of whether this will continue is down to affirmative action by politicians.

British Prime Minister Theresa May’s Chequers proposal, which would see Britain kept in the European single market for goods and agricultural products but not for services, has come under intense scrutiny from her own party, calling on her to reject the deal.

With this in mind, the possibility of a no-deal Brexit is becoming a real possibility.

According to the thinktank, “UK in a Changing Europe”, a no-deal Brexit could result in catastrophic disruption to trade links for British and Irish companies; the status of legal contracts and commercial arrangements with EU companies would be unclear, as the UK would become a “third country” overnight; an increase and uncertainty around processing times for goods at borders would be “nearly certain”, impacting businesses and forcing Irish companies to rethink their supply chains; and there will almost certainly be a “hardening of the border” between Northern Ireland and the Republic, including some “physical manifestation”.

Bord Bia’s online Brexit Barometer assessment is available for Irish companies whereby each respondent will receive a customised Brexit Benchmark Report that maps their preparedness against peer companies by turnover size and sector.

Brexit Advisory Clinics

Enterprise Ireland has been running a number of Brexit Advisory Clinics across the country. The core objective of the Advisory Clinics is to provide information and practical support to companies all around the country to allow them take action to address their exposure to Brexit.

Along with a series of practical seminars, the clinic provides the opportunity to get personalised advice specific to your business. This is delivered through one to one meetings of 40 minutes with independent experts across a number of business areas.

The next Brexit Advisory Clinics will take place in the following locations around Ireland. Registration will open approximately 4 weeks before the Clinic:

  • Galway, Tuesday, October 2nd, Clayton Hotel
  • Dundalk, Monday, October 22nd, Crowne Plaza Hotel
  • Waterford, Tuesday, November 8th, WIT
  • Limerick, Wednesday, November 21st, Radisson Hotel

You can find out more information here.

At this stage preparation is key. The Chartered Institute of Horticulture will be will be holding their annual Conference in London, at the Farmers’ and Fletchers’ Livery Hall, with the theme being “Island Horticulture – ‘Life after Brexit'”. The programme for the event can be read here. It would offer an insight into what the British will see as their major challenges and what they will be doing to minimise the impact Brexit will have on them.

What do you think of Brexit? Are you prepared? Share your comments with us below.

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