The UK’s biggest trading partner is currently the EU single market, which reportedly accounts for approximately 45% of all UK exports of goods and services. Sadly, the UK’s vote to leave the European Union could place the industry in jeopardy, especially if a no-deal Brexit occurs on the 29th March 2019.
It would not only impact both steel manufacturers and suppliers, but it could also affect many other businesses across the country. For this reason, you should find out how Brexit will potentially affect the UK steel industry.
• Exit Will Open Opportunities for Other EU Countries
Britain currently serves as the largest steel exporter inside the EU, but a no-deal Brexit could signal the end of the UK industry’s success across the continent. Once it has officially left the EU, trade volumes could potentially decline.
It could open the door for other exporters across the world, such as Ukraine. This change could unfortunately undermine the UK steel industry, which will be during a critical time in the sector’s recovery.
• A Negative Impact on UK Car Manufacturing & Automotive Steel
It’s not only dependable steel suppliers and manufacturers that will be affected by a no-deal Brexit because it might also impact other UK manufacturers. For instance, it could result in a 10% tariff being placed on cars between both the UK and EU.
Consequently, this could lead to a smaller demand for UK vehicles across the continent and, as a result, a lower demand for UK automotive steel. As expected, the steel industry is currently attempting to manage the potential issues that might arise, but the prospect of a no deal Brexit is unsurprisingly making it harder for businesses to mitigate.
• Implications of the EU’s Rule of Origin
The Rule of Origin detailed within the EU’s FTA could potentially affect the demand for UK steel across the continent. According to CETA, cars must contain 50% by value of EU products, which will allow them to be imported to Canada without a tariff fee.
As UK steel will no longer be deemed of EU origin following a no-deal Brexit, it is likely the UK could lose its tariff-free accessibility to the Canadian marketplace.
• Withdrawal from Programs and Funds
Following a no-deal Brexit, UK participants will cease to receive EU funds. What’s more, they may need to withdraw from various programs. Unfortunately, this could lead to significant uncertainty for those involved in projects or planning to bid for funding.
The HMT Treasury must clarify the implications for both funding and programs authorized at the time of the country’s departure from the EU and if it would extend to the RFCS.
• Next to No Risk of Tariffs on Steel Products
The good news is, both the UK and EU will not experience imposed tariffs on steel products following a no-deal Brexit. Developed countries agreed to eliminate all custom tariffs on steel products in 1994, so it is unlikely this ruling will change following Britain’s exit from the European Union.