This afternoon, Prime Minister Boris Johnson and CDL Michael Gove spoke to 250 business leaders on preparing for the end of the transition period.
The Prime Minister thanked businesses for the huge efforts they have made so far this year, both to help with the coronavirus pandemic and to prepare for the end of the transition period. He reiterated that on 1st January 2021, change is going to happen and we will be leaving the single market and the customs union, and that the Government stands ready to help businesses get ready.
He added that this should be a moment of change and dynamism for the UK, providing businesses with fantastic opportunities. He also set out the Government’s ambition to unite and level up the country, by providing better skills, education, technology and infrastructure.
The Prime Minister said:
Our job is to create the platform for dynamic businesses such as yours to compete and to grow. But it is vital that everybody on this call takes seriously the need to get ready, because whatever happens – whether it’s Canada or Australia – change is going to happen. There is a big opportunity for this country and we want to help all of you to seize that opportunity.
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Michael Gove said:
I am hugely appreciative of the efforts that so many companies have made over the course of this year, both to help us deal with the Covid crisis and also to prepare for the end of the transition period. We know that this December 31st we will be leaving the customs union and single market come what may. It’s in law, and it’s a fact that the EU and UK accept as immoveable, and that means we need to make sure we’re ready.
Attendees represented a range of British business and industry, including transport, retail and manufacturing. They outlined ongoing preparations for the end of the transition period, including the challenges and opportunities ahead.
CDL committed to continue working closely with industry in the coming months to ensure that all businesses can prepare for the changes at the end of the transition period, and the actions which businesses need to complete regardless of the outcome of negotiations.
The Prime Minister also made clear that the Government will support businesses to get ready – and was optimistic that the country will thrive whatever the outcome of the negotiations.