The UK will be able to continue exporting animals and animal products to the EU in the event of a no-deal Brexit, Defra has confirmed.
EU member states have granted the UK ‘national listed status’, ensuring that exports of meat, fish and dairy, can continue. The move offers farmers and food producers welcome clarity and provides security for a market worth £5 billion a year.
Environment secretary Theresa Villiers, said: “This is good news for UK businesses. It demonstrates our very high standards of biosecurity and animal health which we will continue to maintain and improve after we leave the EU.
“If you or your business import or export animal and animal products, we want to make sure you are ready for Brexit. Our guidance sets out what you need to do to continue to trade after we leave the EU.
“Our top priority remains delivering Brexit by the end of October, and our preference is to do that with a negotiated deal, but it is the job of a responsible Government to ensure we are ready to leave without a deal and without any further pointless delay.”
With listed status confirmed, if the UK does leave without a deal, businesses exporting animals and animal products to the EU will still be required to meet new requirements, such as going through the correct EU Border Inspection Post. Businesses will also need an Export Health Certificate, signed by an Official Veterinarian.
If we leave with a deal, the UK will not need to be listed during the implementation period. To give certainty to businesses and citizens, common rules will remain in place until the end of the implementation period, meaning businesses will be able to trade on the same terms as now until the end of 2020.