Wirral Chamber of Commerce launches The Brexit Hub

Wirral Chamber of Commerce, alongside partners including Wirral Council, has launched a Brexit Hub, a forum aimed at providing businesses with a one-stop-shop for advice and guidance.

With only a short time until the exit date of March 29, the chamber said there still remains confusion and concerns about the impact for businesses post-Brexit and little direction from the UK’s political leadership across Westminster and within Central Government.

Wirral Chamber of Commerce said it believes there is a need to focus on the practicalities of Brexit for business communities, not only for Wirral, but throughout the UK.

The Wirral Brexit Hub will comprise a dedicated team in both policy and international trade, and will provide businesses with key advice and guidance on all matters concerning Brexit through independent resources provided by the British Chambers of Commerce.

The Hub will be hosting monthly briefings with key businesses and local authorities in developing a Wirral-wide Brexit strategy to help sustain the region’s healthy economy, secure opportunities for Wirral post-Brexit, and protect and prepare businesses for potential implications that may arise.

Over recent months a number of business sectors, including manufacturing, construction, and the automotive industry have reported serious concerns, with several investment plans already put on hold, and issues raised about the future of supply chain and cash flows.

In a conversation with a local construction firm recently, the chamber said it was told: “Generally, across the construction sector there is significant stock-piling around the Mersey ports, one issue for us would be cash flow.

“Although we have contracts throughout 2019, we had to bring in as much materials as possible before the Brexit date.

“This presents a problem with little or no room at the ports and increased costs for storage, along with a requirement to increase finance which has an impact on our margins.”

The Wirral Brexit Hub will be led through chamber chief executive, Paula Basnett and its head of public affairs, Warren Ward.

Paula Basnett said: “As the exit draws close from the EU there is still great concerns from the business community about the lack of information and the impact that follows, such as trading arrangements and the effect on the country’s GDP and its economic growth.”

Warren Ward, added: “Over the past two years there has been no clear leadership on Brexit, which has not been helped by the ever-changing political climate.

“The Brexit Hub will create a clear and active forum to engage with members, businesses and key stakeholders in providing all the latest updates on exactly what is happening, and look to identify those concerns and call for government to provide answers to the questions asked.”

The chamber is inviting all businesses with any questions or concerns to contact the Wirral Brexit Hub Team on: WirralBrexitHub@WirralChamber.Co.Uk