Confirmation that talks can start on transition and our future relationship with the EU is welcome progress, and industry now needs to see urgent agreement reached on transition arrangements.

To give businesses the certainty and confidence they need to invest and plan for the future, a transition period should be agreed as early as possible in 2018, that:

  • Should be no shorter than two years; and
  • Maintains the current status quo for businesses in the UK and the EU27, by continuing the UK’s status as an EU member until the end of the period.

A one-step transition, made at the end of the transition period, would minimise disruption and give industry the fullest possible opportunity to prepare for new arrangements to be implemented.

ADS Chief Executive Paul Everitt said:

“The start of talks on transition and our future trading arrangements is a major step forward.

“Businesses and employees are counting on both sides in negotiations to put people and prosperity first, and waste no time in reaching a much needed agreement on transition.

“Yesterday, the Treasury Committee recommended that a standstill transition should be negotiated within a matter of weeks.

“The best option that will give businesses the confidence to continue investing here is for UK membership of the EU to be continued during the transition period, making the Brexit process as smooth and orderly as possible.”