Businesses to be hit by tough VAT rules following Brexit

Brexit, Labour Party

Statement from Mary Honeyball MEP

8 January 2018 LONDON

Businesses to be hit by tough VAT rules following Brexit – The Government
need to commission immediate impact assessments”

More than 130,000 firms are expected to be hit when new rules, and red
tape, stipulating businesses must pay VAT upfront on imported goods come
into force, if Britain leaves the EU.*

As the UK Parliament today debates the issue, Mary Honeyball, MEP London,
warned:  “Everyday there is a new unforeseen consequence of Brexit which
is hitting small and medium size businesses, in particular, very hard.

“It’s only recently we discovered the Government has not done any impact
assessments or due diligence in this area (as well as many others). Even
at this 11th hour the Government should commission immediate impact
assessments across the whole range of industries goods and services.

“This is a huge shift which will have a massive and detrimental impact on
thousands upon thousands of businesses which we were never told about
during the referendum campaign.

“The impact cannot be underestimated particularly for small businesses,
but which remain above the VAT threshold.

“Many companies simply don’t have that sort of cashflow available and it
could seriously jeopardise their ability to operate and it will cost


Notes to editors:

Call: Sarah MacKinlay for further information 07956443393 or email

*Currently firms which register with HMRC can import some goods from the
EU free of VAT, with the charge being added to the price of the product
and paid by the customer. Under the new system firms will have to pay the
levy upfront then claim it back later.