16th November 2017.

Brexit Threatens Major Border Disruptions

The UK. faces the prospect of “major border disruptions” after Brexit if the government doesn’t prepare, a panel of lawmakers have warned.

This report is one of many who have criticised Theresa May’s handling of Brexit aftermath.

The report, made by the cross-party Home Affairs Committee, claimed that the government has undertaken “insufficient contingency planning” to prepare the Border Force, which carries out immigration and customs controls.

Their plan to hire an extra 300 border staff by March 2019  was called “completely unconvincing”.

Home Affairs Committee Chairwoman Yvette Cooper warned that failure to prepare customs adequately for all eventualities could create a situation akin to “Operation Stack on steroids”

This is reference to the police operation in Kent, southeast of London, to line trucks up in emergencies on the M20 highway to Dover. In 2015, about 7,000 trucks were backed up along the motorway during a strike by French ferry workers, with vehicles taking 36 hours to work their way to the front and leading some fresh produce to rot.

Brexit negotiations are still ongoing, with May hoping to steer talks with the EU away from divorce arrangements and on to the future trading relationship. The EU has currently demanded a divorce bill of £60 billion from the UK to seal Brexit.

The Home Affairs committee has called on the government to publish “detailed” plans for the impact of Brexit to Britain’s customs arrangements. This should consider all possible outcomes, including if no deal is reached.

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