Preparations for no-deal Brexit come at a cost for small firms

According to new research by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), small businesses are in more need of support than ever due to the long-awaited ‘Brexit Day’ on 31 October and the lack or preparedness that is coming with it. 

In the UK-wide small business assessment of no-deal preparations, research showed that among the 39% of businesses who said that a no-deal scenario will negatively affect them, only 21% have prepared for the anticipated issues. In addition to this, 63% of businesses assessed suggested they do not think they are able to plan.  Those that have prepared for a no-deal Brexit have been subjected to high prices, with the average cost at around £2,000. This price can rise to £3,000 for smaller businesses that import and export goods.  Responding to these findings, FSB National Chairman, Mike Cherry has renewed calls for the delivery of financial assistance including vouchers worth up to £3,000 to aid businesses in their preparations for a potential no-deal scenario. He also called for measures in an early budget to boost cash flow for small businesses, including temporary reduction in VAT, an increase in employee allowance, an expansion of HMRC time to pay arrangement and the extension of the two year retailers business rates discount of 33%, to a wider range of small businesses.  

Speaking of the potential no-deal scenario, Mr Cherry said: “Preparing for this outcome is coming at a high price, with small firms being hit by an unstable pound and having to shell out money on a potential outcome that has been highly disruptive, remains uncertain and is unwanted,”

“The government must use what little time is left before 31 October to provide small firms with the support they need to navigate the uncharted and turbulent waters of a no-deal Brexit” Mr Cherry added.  The government have recently launched a ‘Get ready for Brexit’ campaign which includes on online checklist which aims to inform individuals and businesses on how to prepare for Brexit.