What does the post-EU landscape look like for British business? For some businesses, the decision last summer to leave the EU has provided an unexpected boost in trading. For one thing, exports from the UK are more attractive thanks to the drop in the value of the pound. This helps exporting businesses here in the UK to be more competitive than their European counterparts. However, Brexit is a double edge sword as we’ve seen in the steep rise in the cost of imported goods. As these costs are inevitably passed onto the consumer, although still fairly low, inflation is now at its highest level since 2013.
Despite or perhaps because of the recent triggering of Article 50 and impending negotiations, UK companies remain committed to strong trading relationships with the EU. This is according to the results of the British Chamber of Commerce’s International Trade Survey, released earlier this year. The findings show that over a third (36%) of responding businesses plan on putting more resources into exporting to the European market over the next five years.
How will Brexit affect European operations?
SMEs will be looking to government for clarity on how Brexit will affect their business and operations. VAT is a prime example. The majority of UK firms currently trading within the EU don’t incur European VAT – will this continue once we leave? This could have a significant impact on import and export strategies. Any future trade deals need to either continue the current tax arrangement, which businesses are accustomed to, or provide a simple alternative. This will allow businesses to plan and adjust their strategies accordingly.
Trading beyond Europe
And how will leaving the European Union affect trade outside of Europe? While UK businesses already operate far and wide (including the US, Far East and India) the majority of these countries work with us within EU regulations, and treat us as ‘European’ businesses rather than British.
As the UK turns its eye to the international markets, trade with businesses in countries like China and the US are paramount to ensuring long-term growth for British SMEs, and the key to prosperity after Brexit.
Helping you trade globally
As a member of MHA our national association, we are independent members of Baker Tilly International; one the largest global associations of independent accountants, auditors, tax advisers and business consultants. That means your journey to understanding and trading in foreign markets can start at MHA Carpenter Box. Through our colleagues across the globe, we can help you to meet the cross-border needs of any business wanting to operate across international markets. So no matter where you intend to operate, you’ll get the best possible commercial and tax efficient advice.
With member firms in over 140 countries, the global footprint that Baker Tilly International delivers means we can access the international expertise our clients need, helping to translate their ambitions into new markets.
Read more about our national and international reach at www.carpenterbox.com/mhainternational-interests