UK Transition information

Business preparation for EU Transition

I’m a business - do I need to do anything specific?

Your business will have to make a number of changes to ensure continued flow of people, data, goods and services between the UK and the EU. These actions are required for businesses:

  • if you sell goods to the EU you must prepare for new customs procedures.
  • if you travel to the EU for work purposes you will need to check if you need a visa or work permit and apply if necessary.
  • if you employ overseas nationals you will need to prepare your business for the implementation of the new immigration system.
  • if you are a UK business or organisation that receives personal data from contacts in the EEA, you may need to take extra steps to ensure that the data can continue to flow at the end of the transition period.
  • if you provide services in the EU, you must ensure that your qualifications are now recognised by EU regulations to be able to practice or service clients in the EU. Many of the changes that are coming at the end of the year relate to business.

Will I be able to hire EU nationals in the future, and under what conditions?

Yes, but the way you hire from the EU is changing. Free movement is ending and the UK is introducing a points-based immigration system.

From 1 January 2021, if you want to hire anyone from outside the UK you must be a Home Office licenced sponsor. This includes recruiting people from the EU.

Anyone coming to the UK to work will need a job offer from a licenced sponsor in advance, and will need to meet certain skills and salary criteria. Find out more information on the GOV.UK website.

How can my company continue to trade cross-border between Northern Ireland and Great Britain?

The Government is working with businesses as it implements the Northern Ireland Protocol. That is reflected in commitments to unfettered access to the whole UK market; to no tariffs on goods remaining in the UK’s customs territory; to NI benefiting in full from the UK’s FTAs with third countries; and to streamlining the processes under the Protocol to ensure there is no new customs infrastructure.

The Trader Support Service provides will guide traders through all import processes at no additional cost. This is backed by £200m in Government funding, ensuring that businesses of all sizes can draw on the support it provides.

My business is primarily based in the EU - what do I need to do?

If you run an EU-based business, you need to check the new rules and prepare for the changes so that you can continue trading with the UK from January 2021. Rules are changing and there will be border requirements placed on the movement of goods between the EU and UK. Check the guidance and find help and support on the GOV.UK Trade with the UK pages.