On 29 March next year, the UK will leave the EU. There will be a transition period from 2020-2021 so that companies have time to adapt to the new regulations for trade between the EU and the UK.
However, if the partners fail to reach agreement, the Brits will be leaving without a transition period and trade will be carried out in accordance with the rules that apply for the World Trade Organisation (WTO). This could entail a shock for all small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that trade with the UK.
Anneli Wengelin, from the National Board of Trade Sweden, says there is a lack of knowledge about Brexit. “Many take the easy trade between EU countries for granted. They cannot even conceive that there will be problems,” she says.
Using Statistics Sweden data, the board has worked out there are at least 7,000 Swedish SMEs that trade only with the current EU countries, including the UK. “For them, the costs will be relatively high. If you do not even know that you must make a customs declaration, then you have no idea what fees you have to pay and when they must be submitted,” she adds.
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