Running business in Poland after Brexit
At midnight on January 31, 2020, Great Britain left the European Union. Pursuant to the agreement on withdrawal from the EU, the so-called transitional period is in force. This means that the rules of crossing the border and stay of UK citizens and their family members in Poland will remain unchanged.
What next after Brexit ?
The agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the EU provides for a transitional period until the end of 2020. It provides for the maintenance of the current relations between the European Union and Great Britain under the current conditions, including preserving the free movement of people.
Thus, from February 1 to December 31, 2020, the current rules for crossing the border between Poland (EU) and the United Kingdom will apply. Polish citizens will be able to travel to Great Britain on the basis of an identity card or passport.
Currently, UK citizens and their family members who are not EU citizens can stay in Poland for up to 3 months without the need to meet any conditions of stay, other than having a valid travel document. If the stay is longer than 3 months, the British, like all citizens of the European Union, are obliged to register their stay in Poland. Members of their families who are not citizens of the European Union are obliged to obtain a residence card of a family member of an EU citizen. The performance of these obligations is possible free of charge at the voivodeship office competent for the place of stay.
During the transitional period, the rules of crossing the border, stay and work of British citizens and their family members in Poland will also remain unchanged. Persons living in Poland during the transition period and continuing this stay after its end will maintain their residence rights and will not have to register to secure them. The obligation to register after the end of the transitional period will apply only to British citizens who are frontier workers – who are employed in Poland but live in another country.
However, UK nationals will be able to exchange their residence permits issued to them as EU nationals for documents certifying their rights under the Withdrawal Agreement or obtain such residence permits if they did not have one before. It is planned that these documents will be issued by voivodeship offices after the end of the transitional period.
It is not known exactly what will happen and what the rules will be after the end of the transition period. Intensive negotiations between the UK and the EU are ongoing and there is generally no reason to be pessimistic (because neither party has any interest in curbing the existing cooperation), but this moment will certainly cause noticeable perturbations.
Certainly, to some extent, this means the return of permits and duties – how significant the changes will be and to what extent they will affect the entrepreneurs’ projects. It’s hard to say at the moment. The role of the policies of individual EU countries will certainly increase, although they will certainly be bound by the EU guidelines, for example in the field of protection of the common market or competition.
According to the report published in June on the effects of Great Britain’s exit from the EU for British industry, published under the aegis of The UK in a Changing Europe think tank, ending the transition period will be a real challenge for British industry. Maintaining the efficiency and profitability of UK industrial companies largely depends on the smooth flow of goods across the border to both sides of the border with the European Union.
The end of the transition period will generate additional costs for UK businesses. Customs duties, declarations, the costs of obtaining certificates, audits to meet the rules of origin or the costs of losing the possibility of cooperation in research and development projects are just a calculation of a small part of the difficulties and additional costs that the British industry will face.
UK industry accounts for 10% of the economy and employs around 9% of human resources. UK-produced goods account for 50% of total UK exports. About 60% of private funds invested in research and development support industrial projects. About half of the goods produced in the UK are sold to the EU. Many companies have closely related supply chains with EU partners.
We are left to hold on to the hope that it will not be profitable for anyone to strike at this quite successful collaboration.
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