The CTPA, an organisation that describes itself as the ‘public voice of a vibrant UK industry’, called on its members (175 member companies, from micro through to multinationals, representing 80-85% of the UK market) to draw the position paper together.
Dubbed ‘Getting the Best from Brexit’, the paper puts forward three key asks from the cosmetics industry:
- Remain in the Customs Union until a Free Trade Agreement with the EU is reached
- Provide a clear and reasonable phased implementation for changes to UK/EU trade, from leaving the EU to signing a full Free Trade Agreement
- Avoid additional administrative trade barriers by securing Administrative Cooperation with EU Competent Authorities for cosmetics post-Brexit.
The paper notes that for the cosmetics industry, the EU is number one trading partner, and also that the US often uses the UK as a stepping stone when moving to target the EU market as a whole. Both of these things are at risk, the paper suggests, from any Brexit agreement that discounts these three key asks.
“It is important to note that our second top importer is the USA, as the UK is often the country of choice for US companies to enter the EU market either via UK distributors acting as their chosen EU partners or to set up European head office,” the paper notes.
Three key asks: in depth
The first of the key asks, ‘remain in the Customs Union until a Free Trade Agreement with the EU is reached’, looks to secure a tariff-free market for export/import of products, raw materials and commodities. The paper says this ask “will be vital to safeguard an efficient supply chain”.
The second of the asks, ‘provide a clear and reasonable phased implementation for changes to UK/EU trade, from leaving the EU to signing a full Free Trade Agreement’, requests a reasonable phased implementation.
This, the CTPA says, will minimise the impact of Brexit on business continuity and provide financial stability for companies.
Finally, the paper’s third ask, ‘avoid additional administrative trade barriers’, looks to secure a specific agreement for cosmetics that will allow UK companies to maintain easy trade with the EU.
The entire position paper is available to read here.