• HMRC facing ‘daunting workload’ as Brexit approaches: According to a Public Accounts Committee report, HMRC is facing mounting pressures, from preparing for Brexit to tackling an increase in fraud. MPs have said that staff and resources have been diverted to deal with customs and border demands which has left HMRC facing choices about its other work. Tax credit fraud and errors are expected to increase and the department has failed to grasp the costs of many taxation reliefs, according to the report. (BBC)

 

  • Sinn Fein warns UK government that border issue is not a “footnote”: Sinn Fein party president Mary Lou McDonald, speaking following a meeting with Brexit secretary Dominic Raab, has accused the government of acting “in bad faith” over Brexit and warned the border issue is not a “footnote”. She added that the government has “stepped back” from its commitment to uphold the Good Friday Agreement. (BBC)

 

  • MP seeks assurances over Arron Banks probe claims: A Labour MP who has campaigned against foreign influence in UK politics has written to Theresa May over claims that she blocked a request to investigate Arron Banks in the run-up to the Brexit referendum. Ben Bradshaw, MP for Exeter, said he would seek assurances from Mrs May that neither she nor anyone else declined a request from the security services to investigate Mr Banks. (FT)

 

  • UK construction activity rises but confidence dips to 6-year low: Britain’s construction activity picked up in October but fears over Brexit grew, with new orders slowing and confidence dipping to a near six-year low. The purchasing managers’ index for the construction industry, compiled by IHS Markit, rose to 53.2 in October, up from 52.1 in September and slightly above economists’ expectations of 52. This was the second-highest level in 16 months. (FT)

 

  • Bank of America moves two more senior bankers to Paris before Brexit: Bank of America is moving another two of its most senior London-based investment bankers to Paris as the firm continues to escalate its preparations for Brexit. Luigi Rizzo, who runs Europe, Middle East and Africa investment banking, will take on the additional role as head of EU corporate and investment banking and relocate to France next year. Michael Coppock, head of EMEA financial institutions corporate banking, will assume the extra responsibility of running EU corporate banking and move to Paris at the same time. BofA has chosen Paris as the centre for its European broker-dealer business, while choosing to locate its main post-Brexit EU headquarters in Dublin. (FT)

 

  • Baker McKenzie will be hosting a Brexit webinar on the VAT and customs implications of a hard Brexit, on Monday 5th November. Details of the webinar and a link to the broadcast can be found here: Webinar Details & Access
Author

Jessica's practice focuses on international trade and anti-bribery work, encompassing customs, export control and sanctions matters. Jessica's trade work includes advising international clients on fast-moving and evolving EU and UN sanctions, notably in respect of Iran and Russia, and on compliance with UK and EU export controls. Her trade experience also includes advising on tariff classification and customs valuations. Jessica's anti-bribery experience includes assisting with investigations, and advising clients on compliance with anti-bribery laws. Jessica has also taken a lead role in monitoring Brexit-related developments; analysing how they will affect the UK's trading position generally, and clients' businesses specifically. She has helped clients begin to conduct risk assessments of how Brexit will impact their businesses, and has assisted them in developing tailored Brexit strategies. Jessica also presents at various seminars, webinars, and conferences on the complexities of Brexit. Jessica advises global clients on complex issues arising from international transactions and works with clients across a number of sectors including pharmaceuticals, defence, finance, aviation, energy, and telecommunications. Jessica has also worked previously in Paris, and is fluent in French.

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