A new membership survey by the British Coatings Federation has revealed “significant concerns” about border delays and separating from European chemical regulations in the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit.
According to the results of the survey, 80% of BCF members said delays at the border were concerning them the most. New chemical regulations were of concern to 82% of the membership, which will be needed in the event the UK no longer has access to the European Chemicals Agency.
Other worrying issues related to a no deal scenario include the cost and availability of raw materials, together with costs related to tariffs and additional administration.
Looking a longer-term impacts, the top issue was “being treated as a third country” by the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), therefore requiring the UK to have its own duplicate system to register chemicals.
These were joined by worries related to reduction in trade with the EU, together with the UK being a less-attractive manufacturing base.
More than 90% of respondents want to see tariff-free access to the EU, together with free movement of goods. 88% of respondents want the UK to stay within EU REACH and the EU regulatory framework, while 83% want chemical regulatory equivalence between the UK and EU.
Commenting on the survey results, Tom Bowtell, chief executive of the BCF, said: “The UK coatings industry has made significant preparations ahead of a no deal Brexit, with 88% of members stating that they have already done some [related] planning.
“These preparations have taken various forms, with 79% building inventory of raw materials and 60% of respondents discussing contingency plans with logistics suppliers.”
Bowtell added that the BCF had also been providing members with updated information regarding UK versions of regulations and plans for procedures at the border.