In August the government released 84 documents offering guidance on how to prepare for Brexit in the increasingly likely circumstances of a ‘no deal’ exit. the papers impact all manner of business and cover aspects from farming to VAT receipts.

The advice shares the government preparations and expected changes to the gun trade in a ‘no deal’ scenario. With just six months to go until ‘Brexit day’ GTN highlight the governmental advice most likely to impact countryside enthusiasts and traders in the firearms industry.

Farming (Rural Development Funding)

Before 29 March 2019:

The rural development programmes in the four UK nations support farmers and land managers who manage their land in ways that benefit the environment, and rural entrepreneurs who wish to develop their business. The programmes are administered by DEFRA in England, and devolved administrations in the other UK nations.

After 29 March 2019:

The UK government has guaranteed that any projects where funding has been agreed before the end of 2020 will be funded for their full lifetime. This means the government would fund any remaining payments to farmers, land managers and rural businesses due after March 2019. this would ensure continued funding for these projects until they finish.

The guarantee also means that DEFRA and the devolved administrations can continue to sign new projects after the uK leaves the eu during 2019 and 2020, up to the value of programme allocations. If the UK leaves without a deal, DEFRA and devolved administrations would ensure an uninterrupted flow of funding to farmers, rural businesses and communities.

To ensure stability and continuity, the guarantee would be administered through existing national and local arrangements, modified and simplified as appropriate in line with domestic rules on spending. projects would need to continue to deliver good value for money and meet domestic strategic policy.

Farmers, land managers and rural businesses with agreements funded by the uK rural development programmes do not need to take any action at present. There would be no substantive change for farmers, land manager and rural businesses who have agreements funded by the UK rural development programmes due to finish after 29 March 2019, and existing application and contracting arrangements would remain in place for those planning to seek funding after the date but before the end of 2020.

Importing and Exporting (Controlled Goods)

Before 29 March 2019:

Military Items – You currently need a licence to export items on the UK military list to any destination, including EU countries. Control on military items (goods and technology) are currently implemented by UK law (Export Control Act 2002, Export Control Order 2008)

Firearms – You need a licence to export firearms from the UK, except if you are an individual with a European firearms pass taking personal firearms from one EU member state to another. This is outline under council directive 91/477/EEC

The export of firearms to countries outside the EU is regulated by council regulation 258/2012. The Export Control Order 2008 also contains an exemption for the temporary export of firearms as personal effects from the UK to countries outside the EU.

After 29 March 2019:

Military Items – There would be no change to controls on the export of military items from the UK other than minor legislative fixes, as EU regulations do not apply in this area.

Firearms – The European firearms pass would no longer be available for UK persons taking their personal firearms into the EU. The exemption that currently applies to the temporary export of firearms as personal effects to the rest of the world would be extended to exports to the EU. If you were seeking to take firearms as personal effects to an EU country you would need to ensure that the destination country would also permit the re-export of the firearm. Dealers and other exporters of firearms would need to continue to apply for licences as they do now.

Business VAT

Before 29 March 2019:

Under current VAT rules it is charged on most goods sold within the UK and EU. It is payable to businesses when they bring goods into the UK, but differ depending on whether the goods come from the EU or non-EU country. Goods that are exported by UK business to non-EU countries and EU businesses are zero-rated, meaning that UK VAT is not charged at the point-of- sale. Exports to EU consumers have either UK or EU VAT charged, subject to distance selling thresholds.

After 29 March 2019:

If the UK leaves the EU without an agreement, the government will introduce postponed accounting for import VAT on goods brought into the UK. This means that UK VAT registered businesses importing goods from EU and non-EU countries will be able to account for import VAT on their VAT return, rather than paying import VAT on or soon after the time that the goods arrive at the UK border. This will help UK businesses make the most of trading opportunities around the world.

Customs declarations and the payment of any other duties will still be required and VAT  registered UK businesses will continue to be able to zero-rate sales of goods to eu businesses. However UK firms will not be required to complete EC sales lists, but will need to retain evidence to prove that goods have left the UK, to support the zero-rating of the supply. This evidence will be similar to that currently required for exports to non-EU countries.

UK businesses will be able to continue to sell goods they have stored in an EU member state to customers in the EU in line with current rest of world rules. Current EU rules would mean that UK businesses will continue to be required to register for VAT in the EU member states where sales are made in order to account for the vAt due in those countries.

Banking and Financial Services

Before 29 March 2019:

The EU internal market for financial services is highly integrated, underpinned by common rules and standards, and co-operation between regulatory authorities at an eu and member state level. This means that if these entities are authorised in one member state, they can provide services to customers in other member states, without requiring authorisation or supervision from the local regulator.

After 29 March 2019:

For UK based firms accessing UK services there is unlikely to be any change, but the cost of card payments between the UK and EU will likely increase. Cross-border payments will no longer be covered by the surcharging ban which prevents businesses from being able to charge customers for using a specific payment method.

For UK-based customers who access banking, insurance and other eu financial services, temporary permission will allow these firms to continue to provide theses service for up to three years after Brexit. The government will transfer functions currently carried out by european bodies to the appropriate UK service.

To help ‘beat the bankers’, the government will also publish a technical notice on transfers of personal data between the UK and the EU which will include financial institutions. more guidance setting out further detail on accounting and record keeping requirements will be issued in due course. Visit how-to-prepare-if-the-uk-leaves-the-eu-with- no-deal to find out more.


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