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Brexit may have begun but it is not over, indeed it may never be finished.

Weekly Brexit Update – 12 March 2021

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Government focuses on recovery from Covid with new timeline for border control processes on import of goods – GOV

  • The government have announced a new timetable for introducing import border control processes to enable UK businesses to focus on their recovery.
  • The new border control processes will apply from 1 January 2022 allowing preparation time for businesses for the changes and minimise disruptions.
  • The revised timetable sets out:
  • Importers of animal products will have to pre-notify officials from 1 October, instead of next month;
  • Safety and security declarations on imports will be pushed back from July to January 2022;
  • Customs declarations will be required at the point of import on all goods from the same time; and
  • Checks on live animals and low-risk plant products will take place from March 2022.

Further trade rules relaxed between GB and NI – BBC

  • UK has announced unilateral relaxations to ease the trade in plants from GB to NI.
  • Specifically:
  • plants, bulbs and vegetables grown in soil can be moved with soil attached, provided they are from an authorised business meeting GB plant passporting requirements for soil;
  • plants can also be moved in containers with growing medium attached if the containers meet the conditions required under GB plant passporting purposes; and
  • movement of agricultural machinery can be made without the need for a plant health certificate, providing they have been washed to remove excessive soil and plant debris.

EU poised to take legal action against UK over Northern Ireland – The Guardian

  • Maroš Šefčovič, chief Brexit negotiator, has said that “infringement proceedings” are being prepared following the UK’s move to unilaterally extend grace periods from March to October on Irish Sea border checks.
  • The EU can take a two pronged approach. Under the NI part of the Brexit deal, the Protocol, it can launch infringement proceedings which could lead to a case at the European Court of Justice and trigger the dispute mechanism in the Brexit withdrawal agreement. Or the EU could also seek arbitration under the terms of the wider EU-UK trade deal.
  • NI has remained a part of the EU’s single market for goods so products arriving from GB undergo EU import procedures. The grace periods mean procedures and checks are not yet fully applied. All parcels entering Northern Ireland would have required customs declarations from 1 April however the UK says they will be extended until October following concerns that the logistics industry were not ready to deal with that volume of new administration.

MEPs again postpone setting date to ratify Brexit deal – Politico

  • European Parliament on Thursday 11 March postponed for the second time a decision on when lawmakers will vote on the post-Brexit trade deal.
  • Whilst the EU-UK Brexit deal entered provisionally into force earlier this year, it needs to be approved and ratified.
  • Theoretically, the European Parliament can wait until the end of April, when the provisional application of the agreement runs out.
 
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