EU launches Brexit legal action against UKFT (15 March 2021)

Brexit: EU to begin legal action over alleged NI Protocol breach BBC (16 March 2021)

  • The EU has sent an infringement proceeding letter to the UK setting out the grounds for legal action which could lead to an EU court ruling and a lump sum fine for non-compliance followed alleged breaches of Northern Ireland Protocol, a part of the Brexit deal which prevents a hardening of the land border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
  • Earlier this month the UK eased trading conditions for Northern Irish businesses including a unilateral proposal to prolong grace periods to 1 October 2021 on checks for goods (food, parcels, pets and horticultural products) going from the UK to Northern Ireland, the first of which were set to expire at the end of March.

Irish goods imports from Britain fall 65% in January after Brexit Reuters (18 March 2021)

  • Imports from Britain to Ireland fell by 65% in January 2021 as compared to January 2020 due to new customs requirements, COVID-19 restrictions and pre-Brexit stockpiling.
  • The value of these imports fell to 497 million euros in January from 1.403 billion euros the previous year.
  • The fall was driven by a 75% drop in imports of food and live animals and a 71% decline in imports of mineral fuels, such as petroleum and natural gas. Imports of chemicals and of machinery and transport equipment also both fell by more than half.

‘Shamrock diplomacy’ shows Biden backs Irish nationalists on post-Brexit trade rulesPolitico (18 March 2021)

  • US President Joe Biden and Irish PM Michael Martin issued a joint statement on St. Patrick’s Day, reaffirming support for the Good Friday Agreement and tying it to the success of the EU-UK trade protocol for the region. The joint declaration underscores that the US expects the British government to intensify EU customs checks on British goods arriving at ports in Northern Ireland, in accordance with the agreed protocol.

Britain, Norway in post-Brexit fisheries deal with EUReuters (16 March 2021)

  • Norway, the UK and the EU have reached a deal on catch limits for the North Sea fishing quotas for cod, haddock, plaice, whiting, herring and saithe.
  • Norway sought this trilateral pact with the UK and the EU on catch limits for fish that swim in the North Sea before making separate deals with the EU and Britain on quotas, as British, Danish, German, Swedish and French vessels all catch fish in the Norwegian part of the North Sea.

Brexit: Trade changes ‘challenging’ for Welsh car industryBBC (16 March 2021)

  • Welsh Automotive Forum (“WAF”) says new checks on imports on goods coming from the EU starting 1 January 2022 and new rules over where car parts can come from could add to customs disruption when they are introduced.
  • Several companies in the automotive industry have already been fined for missing deadlines under the post-Brexit customs processes. The automotive industry has not yet faced usual levels of trade, due to the pandemic, and with some UK based companies having moved production to the EU, there are concerns about supply chain issues in early 2022.
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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