Nadiya Nychay – Written evidence FUU0017
This is supplementary written evidence from Question 5 of the Select Committee on the European Union Goods Sub-Committee, Uncorrected oral evidence: Future UK-EU relations: trade in goods, Evidence Session 1.
Which areas of the agreement pose the biggest challenges (including legal compliance challenges) for trade in goods, and why? What support or guidance do you think would be beneficial for businesses?
I will try to briefly canvass the biggest challenges of the TCA in the area of trade in goods.
Apart from rules of origin, customs formalities and conformity assessment, discussed during the oral session, I would say that the trading relationship of Northern Ireland with the EU and trade with the rest of the UK can cause some friction and compliance challenges across both sides of the Channel.
As you know, the Protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland in the EU-UK Withdrawal Agreement (“the Northern Ireland Protocol” or “the Protocol”) places Northern Ireland de facto in the EU’s single market for goods. This ensures that goods continue to circulate freely between Northern Ireland and the EU, i.e. across the Irish land border, because there are no checks at the Irish border.
At the same time, Northern Ireland remains subject to EU customs law and, to an extent, to the EU law on trade in goods. As a result, however, the EU’s external border for goods is effectively moved by the Protocol to the Irish Sea.
Consequently, special attention will need to be paid to support awareness raising about the terms of trade with the rest of the United Kingdom (and vice versa), to assist businesses in their compliance efforts.