Responding to today’s announcement of a political commitment to a transition period, Allie Renison, Head of Europe & Trade Policy at the Institute of Directors, said:
“Business leaders will welcome the announcement of a provisional agreement on an implementation period and congratulate the UK Government for heeding the call of business and making it a priority early on. Knowing that trade and immigration arrangements will continue unchanged until at least the end of 2020 will allow business operations and investment decisions to carry on without unnecessary disruption for the time being.
“We hope that the EU summit this week will not be seen as an opportunity for political leaders to muddy the waters of this deal as agreement on transition is vital for businesses across Europe.
“We are, however, concerned that not enough attention is being given now to the finer details and practical implications of transition. Many businesses will only be able to sufficiently plan and prepare for Brexit once the precise details of the future relationship are known, and any changes to domestic infrastructure like customs have been implemented. David Davis is therefore right to say we must progress immediately on to substantive trade negotiations without further delay. With that said, both sides should commit now to a finite adjustment period once a new trade agreement has been finalised, as is the case for most trade deals.”