Possibility of 'No-Deal Brexit' Looms Larger as UK Outlines Contingency Framework
Great Britain is scheduled to leave the European Union in 2019 (Photo: Flickr, davekellam )

The British Government has released a set of 25 so-called "technical notices" that outline how business will be conducted between the UK and the European Union countries in the event the two cannot come to a deal for Great Britain to exit the trade union.

These "technical notices" covered everything from financial services to nuclear materials, advising companies and the public on how to prepare for such a scenario. The outline was announced by Dominic Raab, the Brexit Secretary.

The UK is due to leave the EU on March 29, 2019, nearly three years after 52 percent of voters voted in favour of ending the country's 43-year membership of the trading bloc.

Raab insisted he was "still confident" of reaching an agreement with the EU ahead of the country’s planned departure, saying failure of talks was "unlikely".

"I remain confident a good deal is within our sights and that remains our top, and overriding, priority," he said at a speech in London, as the government published the first of a series of "technical notices" to advise different sectors of the economy on how to handle negotiations collapsing.

"If the EU responds with the same level of ambition and pragmatism, we will strike a strong deal that benefits both sides. But we must be ready to consider the alternative," he said.

One of the document outlined the framework for financial services. It said that the British government would allow EU financial services firms continued "passporting" rights to operate in the UK for up to three years, even if no agreement on such services is reached with the bloc -though it cannot guarantee that the EU will let British companies operate there.

Britain will recognise EU standards for medicines - so drugs from the bloc will not need to be re-tested in the UK -  and will continue to fund British research programmes and academic exchanges that currently receive funding from the EU.

Raab had said, "In some cases, it means taking unilateral action to maintain as much continuity as possible in the short term, in the event of no deal - irrespective of whether the EU reciprocates." The above guidelines  seem to be part of the ‘unilateral action’ that the Brexit Secretary talked about.

In the scenarios outlined by the government, Britons were warned of possible "increased costs and slower processing times" for euro transactions, told that "the cost of card payments between the UK and the EU will likely increase"; consumers may also have to pay more for online shopping and businesses could face additional customs costs.

These are just a hint of the separation pains that Britons as well as multi-national companies working in the UK could face in the event of a ‘No-deal Brexit.’