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Businesses should make their own plans for Brexit, says P&R

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POLICY & Resources has said it is not appropriate to provide fuller details of its Brexit preparations at this time and has urged businesses to ‘make their own plans’.

Prime Minister Theresa May speaks during Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday January 9, 2019. See PA story POLITICS PMQs May. Photo credit should read: House of Commons/PA Wire. (23563459)

On Monday, as lorries queued up outside Dover to practise an emergency traffic system if there was no deal, local supermarkets warned of potential supply problems.

The States of Jersey will host a series of Ready for Brexit events next week where ministers will outline preparations for different scenarios.

The UK parliament is expected to have a meaningful vote on Theresa May’s deal on Tuesday, with those looking to avert a no-deal scenario having already won some political victories as debate got under way.

A P&R spokesman said that the Bailiwick’s preparations are aligned with the UK’s wherever possible.

‘The States of Guernsey has been working with the UK Government to carry extensive preparations for all scenarios, including no deal, over the last two years,’ he said.

‘The communication with businesses and the wider public will increase as the UK’s exit from the EU approaches.

‘More information will be provided in due course should a no-deal Brexit become a more likely outcome.

‘Until that time it is not appropriate to provide further details, other than to confirm that work is continuing to ensure the security of supply of foods, medicines and medical supplies, fuels and chemicals.

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‘It is recommended that businesses make their own plans. ‘For example, in December the Committee for Home Affairs issued guidance for traders to assist those businesses that trade in goods and that will be effected by the end of our Protocol 3 relationship with the EU.’

The UK is scheduled to leave the EU on 29 March.

If there is a vote for a deal on Tuesday, P&R intends to publish a policy letter on Guernsey’s position in response to the arrangements soon after to be debated by the States on 30 January.

In the event of a no deal, then there will be a statement at that meeting instead.

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P&R ‘will be liaising closely with the UK Government throughout this time’.

‘This approach will enable the committee to take all the latest developments into account, before updating the States, as the situation will continue to unfold after the date of the meaningful vote.

‘This approach demonstrates that, while we hope for an orderly exit by the UK, we have planned and are ready to respond to all eventualities.

‘As well as this planned engagement through the States, we will continue to engage with industry whether it be directly, through the industry bodies, or through the committee’s Brexit Group in order to help business prepare for the UK’s exit from the EU.’

Nick Mann

By Nick Mann
author

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