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The Catalan meat sector will save € 69 million in tariffs to the United Kingdom, but the bureaucracy increases

When Brexit is already a fact, the agreement reached this past Christmas Eve will allow a saving of 69 million euros in tariffs to the Catalan agri-food sector, according to a statement from the public company PRODECA, dependent on the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Food of the Generalitat. The pact makes it possible to foresee that Catalan food exports in the United Kingdom will increase by up to 9% in 2021. Furthermore, Catalan exports should not compete with new commercial actors that may have better conditions since the relations between both markets will not be governed by the framework of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Food is the fourth sector of the Catalan economy that most exports to the United Kingdom, with 12.7% of the total, which in 2019 translated into 548.7 million euros, being the 19th largest supplier market in the United Kingdom. The ‘fine food’ is the Catalan agri-food sector that sells the most in the United Kingdom, with 35.6% of total exports that represent 195.4 million euros; followed by meat, with 31.2% and 171.4 million euros, and fruit and vegetables, with 10.96% and 60.14 million euros.

More logistics and VAT management

Prodeca points out that, despite the agreement, “Brexit triggers a series of changes in the logistics, operational and bureaucratic management of companies that want to export their products to the United Kingdom.”

In addition, companies must take into account economic aspects such as VAT management, customs control, increased management costs and time at the borders in transport, and legal and commercial changes that may occur.