EU braces for Brexit chaos: Brussels fears ‘inevitable disruptions’ will engulf bloc

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Since UK officially left the EU back in January, trade deal negotiations have been ongoing but both sides have so far failed to come to an agreement.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson plans to end the transition period by December 31 with or without a trade deal.

According to reports, the EU is updating its emergency plans for a hard Brexit outcome due to the lack of progress on both sides.

The chairman of the European Parliament’s Trade Committee, Bernd Lange, told Force: “Unfortunately, we still don’t know what exactly the British Government has in mind.

“There is constantly something new – sometimes it is an agreement in the style of an EU-Australia agreement that does not exist, sometimes it is an agreement like CETA with Canada, but which wouldn’t account for out previous relationship.”

Although Brussels have not given up hope of a successful negotiation outcome, the EU Commission is reportedly looking to at copycat agreements.

Mr Lange believes a deal similar to Switzerland’s could be ready to sign within six weeks.

He said: “An agreement on customs formalities, a transitional arrangement for financial services and financing, a transitional arrangement for the recognition of certifications and approvals, an aviation agreement and an agreement on research cooperation and police cooperation would be possible, for example.”

But he warn it would not be desirable and a way of “limiting damage”.

The issue of border checks have raised concerns for businesses in the UK including those in the motor manufacture industry.

And chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the European Parliament, David McAllister, hopes businesses will put pressure on Mr Johnson.

He said: “The export-oriented British goods industry will certainly speak out again.”

The EU Commission is already warning European countries for “inevitable disruptions” from January 1, 2021.

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According to the Commission, those entering the EU from the UK can expect “thorough checks” at the border.

Concerns over the borders between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland have been raised over multiple discussions.

Markus Ferber, finance policy expert in the European Parliament, warned a no deal outcome would tear a hole in the “European protective shield for consumers”.

Mr Ferber said: “Nobody has been able to explain to me how effective controls are actually to be carried out at the border between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

“It must be ensured that unsafe toys from China or hormone-laden meat from the USA are not simply imported into Ireland via Northern Ireland and from there to the mainland.

“A Brexit without a deal threatens to tear a hole in the European protective shield for consumers.”

The UK’s International Trade Secretary also warned Mr Johnson his border plans risk smuggling, damage to the UK’s international reputation and could face a legal challenge from the World Trade Organisation.

In a letter seen by Business Insider and the Guardian, Ms Truss said: “Dear Rishi and Michael, I am writing to you to set out my key areas of concern on border policy and readiness for the end of the transition period and to seek your assurance that the concerns will be addressed.”

She warned there is a risk of smuggling as full checks will not be in place for all goods coming into the UK border.

“I would like assurances that we are able to deliver full control at these ports by July 2021 and that plans are in place from January to mitigate the risk of goods being circumvented from ports implementing full controls,” she wrote.

Additional reporting by Monika Pallenberg

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