Britain will leave the European Union on Thursday, 48 years after joining the bloc, a major change in the world order that will also bring about major changes for ordinary Britons.

One. January marks the end of decades of trade with the EU without customs declarations or legal barriers – one of many changes likely to have a major and lasting impact on the UK economy. The rights of a British citizen to live, work or study in another EU Member State are also being abolished, which illustrates the extent to which the EU affects the daily lives of its citizens. EU citizens will also lose these rights in the UK.

For Brexit supporters, including the Prime Minister.

Boris Johnson,

These costs are justified by the benefits and possibilities of leaving the EU. This departure will enable Britain to stimulate British trade with the rest of the world and legislate to shape the economy and society without interference from Brussels, they say.

Brexit is not the end, but the beginning, and it is now up to all of us to make the best use of our regained powers, Johnson said Wednesday during a debate in Parliament on the UK-EU Free Trade Agreement.

The agreement reached on Christmas Eve between London and Brussels on the terms of their future relations covers more than 1000 pages and covers areas as diverse as fishing rights and enforcement cooperation.

Nevertheless, some of the key areas of the UK’s post-accession agreements with its neighbours remain to be finalised, notably the long-term framework for trade in financial services and cross-border data exchange. The United Kingdom is an exporter of the first and the second is one of the most important lubricants in world trade.

For companies, the most important changes will take place on 1. The month of January will be felt by UK exporters and importers trading with the EU. New customs declaration and regulatory procedures will enter into force. No duties are levied on trade in goods, but companies importing parts from all over the world to produce goods for sale in the EU have to respect the rules of origin which set the maximum percentage of foreign inputs that may be contained in the final product in order to avoid the application of duties.

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Thursday work continued on the completion of the Inner Borders project in Sevington, Southeast England.

Photo:

Gareth Fuller/Zuma Press

The United Kingdom has stated that it will give companies bringing goods into the United Kingdom some leeway in applying the new rules to ensure the smooth movement of goods. The EU has not provided such guarantees, which increases the risk of delays and distortions in cross-border trade during the introduction of the new rules.

This disruption is likely to hurt economic growth, particularly in the first quarter, and will continue throughout the year, according to Citi economists in a research paper this month. In their view, the effects of the pandemic are likely to be exacerbated by the pandemic, which has prevented British business leaders from taking the necessary preparatory measures. A Bank of England survey in November found that only 40% of CEOs said they would be ready on 1 January. January was fully prepared.

Overall, Citi estimates that this disruption will reduce UK GDP in 2021 by around 2% compared to what it would have been if it had remained within the Single Market, the Single Regulatory Area and the customs territory of the EU.

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Since the first one. In January, companies providing services face similar or even greater challenges. The FTA between the UK and the EU only contains general provisions on trade in cross-border services which do not correspond to the level of access to the internal market, according to a report by the Government Institute published after the agreement.

IFG, an impartial political think tank, said British service companies would also face local restrictions depending on the laws that each EU member state applies to non-European companies. Professional qualifications are not always automatically recognised, e.g. B. Business travellers may need a visa to see customers, depending on the length of their stay. None of these barriers apply to professionals from EU countries. Some services are completely banned for providers from third countries.

For example, UK nationals cannot sell actuarial services in Italy or construction services in Cyprus. According to the IFG report, they will not be able to be a surveyor in Bulgaria or a cigar farmer in France.

Most UK financial services providers will be subject to the same rules from 1 January. From 1 January, the EU will no longer be able to provide services to EU customers until a so-called equivalent EU decision on the scope of market access has been taken and is still pending. However, the Bank of England said in November that major UK banks, insurers and asset managers had already set up subsidiaries in the EU so as not to disrupt their operations in the EU.

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Most UK financial service providers will no longer be able to provide services to customers in the EU.

Photo:

Simon Dawson/Reuters.

The UK Treasury has temporarily authorised EU companies providing a range of financial services to UK customers, but the EU has only done so for the clearing of certain financial assets through the UK stock exchanges. EU officials said that they could not give a timetable for the introduction of equivalence for the UK financial services sector, although both sides are expected to conclude a cooperation agreement on financial regulation by the end of March.

Data is another unresolved issue. The companies will also be present on 1. In January, it will still be possible to send personal data electronically across the border between the UK and the EU for a maximum period of six months. The EU has stated that it will decide in the first months of 2021 whether UK legislation meets its standards in order to continue data traffic.

Brexit will also change trade in the UK. In order to avoid the need to reintroduce the customs border on the island of Ireland, Northern Ireland will remain within the customs territory of the EU and the internal market. This requires stricter controls on products entering Northern Ireland from the United Kingdom.

The agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union took place at the end of December, a few days before the end date. It gives the United Kingdom a great deal of freedom to deviate from EU rules and to conclude free trade agreements with other countries. Photo: Paul Grover/Poole (originally published on 24 December 2020).

Also for British families is the 1. The January is changing. Tourists with British passports will no longer be able to use express lines for EU citizens with automatic doors at airports. People travelling to EU countries will still be able to buy tax-free alcohol, but there will be new restrictions on the amount of alcohol they can buy. Some mobile phone charges are no longer subject to EU limits, which is likely to lead to higher prices for international calls and text messages.

British students face higher requirements in terms of tuition fees and access to studies at EU universities. And pets that can travel freely with their owners throughout the EU under the EU pet passport scheme must have a pet passport with them from 1 January. January a veterinary certificate to enter an EU country.

-Lawrence Norman in Brussels contributed to this article.

Email Jason Douglas at [email protected]

Amendment and addition
The EU rules of origin specify the proportion of foreign inputs that a finished product may contain in order to avoid customs duties. An earlier version of this article wrongly stated that the rules required a minimum level. (as of 31 December)

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