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A peek at the compliance nightmare of a no-deal Brexit

Paul Hodgson | August 14, 2018

The images of U.S. ships with their holds full of slowly rotting soybeans circling Chinese ports while tariff negotiations are thrashed out are ubiquitous. Now imagine how it might look, or smell, if a lorry full of Camembert was stuck in a queue for days at Dover. It might become an all too familiar sight if the United Kingdom leaves the European Union with a no-deal Brexit, a U.K. exit from the EU without any deal on future relations. The scenario is far from unlikely, given all the issues that remain to be resolved.

At the same time Prime Minister Theresa May is playing down the possibility of a no-deal Brexit, the government is planning to release over the next two months 70 “technical notifications” giving guidance to stakeholders on preparing for such a scenario.

“I think the possibility of a no-deal is uncomfortably high at this point,” Bank of England Governor Mark Carney recently told BBC 4’s Today programme. It’s a situation he described as “highly...

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