EU-UK EVOLVING RELATIONSHIP BULLETIN

EU-UK Evolving Relationship Bulletin

 

Although the EU-UK trade agreement has been concluded, it has become clear that there are still many issues to resolve and many areas left for the UK and EU to discuss further. At Instinctif Partners we will continue to track the evolving EU-UK relationship and monitor major changes in regulations the UK or the EU may adopt post-Brexit on a weekly basis.

 

EU-UK Future Relationship Updates

 

Northern Ireland Protocol
Limited progression on the Northern Ireland Protocol

  • Potential revisions to the Northern Ireland Protocol remain at an impasse, as the summer holidays are well under way for both the European Commission and the UK Government.
  • Negotiations are understood to resume between the sides in the coming weeks, yet the political mood is not hugely positive, especially with Autumn bringing the end to a series of grace periods on checks on goods moving between Britain and Northern Ireland.

Scottish Government calls for clarity

  • The Scottish Government has also called for more clarity on UK ministers’ plans to renegotiate the Northern Ireland Protocol.
  • External Affairs Secretary Angus Robertson said that the ongoing tensions between the UK and EU were of “great concern” because they could “worsen the already damaging trade impact on Scotland of the UK Government’s hard Brexit and have wider ramifications for EU-UK relations…”
  • Ahead of his meeting with Brexit Minister Lord Frost, Robertson argued that the recent UK Government Command Paper “gambled” with Scotland’s EU trade.

 

Blame game against the EU

  • A new poll by Redfield and Wilton Strategies poll for Politico has revealed that less than a third of British voters think Boris Johnson’s Government is to blame for post-Brexit trade issues.
  • The poll found that 45 percent of respondents believe that the EU is responsible for the problems arising from implementing the Northern Ireland protocol.

 

 Supply Chains
The damaging impact on supply chains

 

  • Vegetable producers say they are being severely impacted by labour shortages caused by the pandemic and Brexit.
  • Farm managers have said that the usual Eastern European labour force that their business models rely on have not been available this year, resulting in thousands of vegetables being lost to weeds.
  • NISA, the supplier to independent retailers owned by the Co-op, has warned some its members have had to cancel deliveries due to driver shortages. It said its current volume of orders was three times its vehicle and driver capacity.
  • Logistics UK, which represents freight owners including supermarkets, has estimated a shortage of 90,000 HGV drivers, including about 25,000 from the EU who have gone home since Brexit.
  • The latest problems with deliveries come amid frenzied competition for specialist HGV drivers caused by a mix of Brexit, the Covid-19 pandemic and tax changes that have prompted some drivers to leave the trade.

 

Other EU-UK Relationship News

 

French-British relationship “at its lowest”

  • The Franco-British relationship is at its lowest point in decades, according to officials on both sides of the Channel. The strains of Brexit, the different outlooks of the two countries’ leaders and recent conflicts over Coronavirus have all contributed to this souring of the relationship.
  • The countries failed to hold a joint event last November to mark the 10th anniversary of the Lancaster House treaties for Defence and Security Cooperation. Both sides blamed the pandemic and Brexit negotiations for why the event was postponed, however underlying this was the reality that neither country had much ambition to mark the anniversary.
  • UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson recently tried to reach out to Emmanuel Macron on arranging a Summit, yet the French President reportedly rejected the proposal. This comes after Macron offered to reset UK–France relations if Johnson stood by the Brexit ‘divorce’ deal.

UK artists can now tour in 19 EU countries without a visa

  • The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has stated that 19 Member States have confirmed UK musicians and performers do not need visas or work permits for short-term tours, following discussions with member states of the EU.
  • The DCMS stated it was “actively engaging with the remaining EU member states that do not allow visa and permit free touring…calling on them to align their arrangements with the UK’s generous rules, which allow touring performers and support staff to come to the UK for up to three months without a visa”.
  • Music industry figures, however, say there is “nothing new” in this claim, instead it has simply forced the UK Government to come out and clarify visa rules for its own artists touring the EU.

 

If you have any questions or requests, reach out to daniel.costa@instinctif.com