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European network aims to deliver ‘best Brexit’ for industry

14 May, 2018

Euris, the umbrella group of industrial trade organisations that together represent more than 25% of the UK’s imports and exports, has set up an advisory body to help deliver the best outcome from Brexit for the industrial product supply sector.

The creation of the Euris European Network follows a summit meeting in London which brought together industry associations from across Europe, along with representatives from UK government departments and other interested organisations, such as BSI. The aim of the meeting was to discuss a joint UK-EU industry working plan to ensure a successful Brexit for product manufacturers.

“The industrial product supply sector has come together in a constructive manner to establish a working party to deliver the best Brexit for our industry,” explains Euris chair, Dr Howard Porter, who is also CEO of the electrical trade body, Beama. “This is an important time for our sector and we look forward to announcing the outputs of our network in the coming months.”

The new network will act as an advisory body on the potential impacts of the changing relationship between the UK and EU, for Governments, manufacturers and the media. It also hopes to offer answers to the challenges that Brexit poses to the industrial sector, as well as ideas on how to maximise the opportunities that Brexit presents.

“There are many areas where UK and EU industry can work together to achieve the best outcome for all of us, and the Euris European summit has been an excellent starting point for this discussion,” says Euris’ vice-chair and Gambica chief executive, Steve Brambley. “The creation of a European Euris Network is an exciting development and one Euris members will all be working closely on going forward”.

A key objective is to minimise any changes to the way that the industrial sector does business across Europe, with as few barriers as possible to imports and exports. “Customers want manufacturers to carry on as before,” says Paul O’Donnell, the MTA’s head of external affairs.

Euris chair Dr Howard Porter: an important time for our sector

The summit discussed issues including standards and regulations, Notified Bodies (an area where UK could play a role post-Brexit), and “rules of origin” – a topic which O’Donnell describes as “fiendishly complicated”.

Euris brings together 11 UK trade organisations representing industrial sectors from automation, fluid power and manufacturing technologies, to lighting, renewable energy, plastics and catering equipment. It members represent about 5,000 suppliers with a combined turnover of £110bn, most of them SMEs. Brambley points out that it represents imports and exports with the EU worth twice as much as the automotive sector.

The first meeting of the Euris European Network will take place with EU trade associations this summer. It will examine the trade implications of Brexit for the manufacturing sectors in the UK and other EU states, and try to establish common positions. This meeting may be followed by another summit in the autumn.

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