On the 23rd of June 2016, Britain voted to leave the European Union and straight after this the pound fell to its lowest since 1985! This had a knock-on effect that all imports brought in any currency other than GBP cost more.
With only 6 months to go to the original exit date UK PLC is none the wiser of what type of Brexit we will get. Will it be a hard Brexit, working to WTO rules? Will it be a trading agreement base on the Swiss model? Or will it be a hybrid of all things, where anything goes?
It maybe coincidental but on June 11th, 2018 with no prior warning the Port of Felixstowe introduced the next generation terminal management system with the introduction going badly wrong and over three months later the position has not been fully restored. This has resulted in the Port playing catch up and there are literally thousands of containers out of position causing delays of up to 14 days from ETA’s. We ask ourselves is this a taste of what is to come, and how do we reduce the risk of it getting worse after Brexit?
At QTS we have reviewed our supply chain and wherever possible source material from the UK. these materials are then used to manufacture our finished product here in the UK. Has this process been easy? No, it certainly hasn’t but by working closer than ever with our suppliers we are now starting to feel Brexit ready.
We recognise that we are a supplier as well as a customer. As the UK’s only mainstream manufacturer of wire mesh decking of the EasyShelf™, we would like to share our experiences of manufacturing in the UK. We hope that we all feel less of a bump when the Brexit deal is decided. In addition to the EasyShelf™, we have also protected the manufacturing of our StorGUARD™ Partition system and RackGUARDIAN™ Anti-Collapse Mesh system to help support our existing customer base with continued supply in the event of delays at the ports as we transition the biggest business change for a generation.
We like to think we have absorbed most of the headaches, so our customers can continue to successfully complete installations within the project timeframes and budgets that they agreed to. In doing so, our customers are also supporting UK manufacturing and UK PLC through what will be different and challenging times.
Are you Brexit ready? Are your suppliers Brexit ready? With only 6 months to go, it is worth asking the question.