Maritime UK responds to UK Government’s Brexit White Paper

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The Chairman of Maritime UK, David Dingle, has issued a statement responding to the UK Government’s Brexit White Paper.

Mr Dingle said: “The maritime sector welcomes the clarity that is now emerging from the UK government.

“Our greatest concern in leaving the EU has been disruption to the flow of trade at ports. This white paper, if realised, would preserve frictionless trade at our borders.

“Industry on both sides of the channel has been calling for frictionless trade, and shared rules would remove many of the barriers to achieving frictionless trade.

“Shared rules will also support the export of the UK’s marine equipment. We equally welcome the ambition to achieve mutual recognition of professional qualifications, including certificates of competency), free movement of staff to ensure our companies have access to the best talent, and continued participation in European initiatives such as the European Maritime Safety Agency.

“This is, clearly, however, a negotiation. So whilst we welcome this renewed pragmatism from the UK government, we call on the European Union to urgently realise their mutual interest and make these proposals work. The time for political games is over.

“Despite the progress, there are areas where further clarity is needed. This includes EU VAT and services.

“We need to be able to continue serving customers in the EU. The UK is the world’s premier centre for maritime services, and we’ve long called for mutual recognition as part of the UK’s future relationship.”