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KPMG comments after Cabinet discussion on new customs partnership proposal

Cabinet discussion on new customs partnership proposal

KPMG’s Customs Lead, Bob Jones comments on the proposals for the new UK-EU customs arrangements discussed by Brexit cabinet committee yesterday


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“Many clients don’t like the New Customs Partnership proposal because it would bring uncertainty, take a long time to implement and mean higher costs. When we talk to the people involved in day-to-day trade with the EU this proposal is usually described as blue-sky thinking rather than a practical solution.

“The Highly Streamlined Customs Arrangement proposal, often dubbed ‘max fac’ is generally regarded as a more realistic option because it’s broadly based on tried and tested techniques. Many bigger businesses are already gearing up for this option even though they say it isn’t frictionless and it can be a challenge to implement. Some of the concerns with this option are that it also needs to work for businesses with small and medium sized trade flows and it must fully address the Irish border issue.

“Ultimately, both options are complex, often difficult to implement, and they will be expensive compared to the current system. That’s why most of the clients we speak to would prefer to stay in the existing Customs Union and they are still looking to see what happens with the political amendments aiming to make this happen.” 




For further information please contact:

Paul Middleton, KPMG Corporate Communications

T: +44(0) 20 7694 2180

M: +44 (0)738 725 7543


KPMG Press Office

T: +44 (0) 207 694 8773

About KPMG

KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, operates from 22 offices across the UK with approximately 14,500 partners and staff. The UK firm recorded a revenue of £2.2 billion in the year ended 30 September 2017. KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. It operates in 152 countries and has 189,000 professionals working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International"), a Swiss entity. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such. 

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