Page 1

The IoD’s

business report

Proud sponsors:

Contents 3 Introduction 4

Policy Spotlight: Labour mobility and services

13 Policy Voice: Trade and your business 14 Business Support: Exports support 16 Guidance: EU Settlement Scheme 18 Business Planning: Brexit checklist 2



Introduction Edwin Morgan Interim Director General, IoD Global economic slowdown. Political uncertainty. Trade disruption and trade wars. It’s a tricky operating environment out there for business leaders. Developing and maintaining an international reach takes real ingenuity. It’s about identifying market opportunities, understanding supply chains and managing tariff and non-tariff barriers. Yet, despite these obstacles, almost three-quarters of IoD members report that their business exports. Directors are selling not just to neighbouring markets like the EU but also to regions further afield, such as South America, Africa and Australasia. And it’s far from a one-way street, as trade is far from a zero-sum game; 57% of IoD members import from abroad for business purposes. Government has an important role in encouraging UK firms to trade internationally. The Department for International Trade’s Export Strategy pledges to help British companies to grow on the world stage. A list of DIT’s support for exports is enclosed. Trade is not just about goods, but services, too. The skills, talents and knowledge which the likes of lawyers, consultants and engineers bring when they travel across borders – even on short-term contracts – are crucial. The Government should be mindful of this as the Home Office consults on its future immigration policy. In this pack, we explain the important link between labour mobility and trade in services. It is impossible to talk about global business without mentioning the B-word. The IoD has been lobbying for our elected representatives to find a way through the Brexit logjam, as our members have been clear that uncertainty clogs the wheel of commerce. In the meantime, business leaders can consult our comprehensive Business Planning for Brexit guide, available exclusively to IoD members. The ‘Brexit Checklist’ in this pack is drawn from the guide. We live in uncertain times, but we at the IoD hope that the guidance and practical help we provide you with can help your business prosper internationally.




Policy Report

Labour mobility and services Claudia Catelin & Allie Renison

The Government’s post-Brexit vision of a free trading ‘Global Britain’ must acknowledge the crucial importance of labour mobility in achieving its goals – particularly for the trade in services, which comprises over 40% of UK exports.1 1 House of Commons Library, 2018: https://researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ ResearchBriefing/Summary/CBP-7851




educed tariffs, standardised customs practices, and streamline regulation all help to enable trade. But an international labour force is both pivotal, and in some cases a necessary condition, for facilitating the international services trade – where transactions are more reliant on the skills, ingenuity, and experience of people. This is recognised by the international community. As the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) puts it: ‘Trade in services depends on the movement of professionals...Mobility of natural persons across international borders is crucial, particularly for trade in business services’2. The country-specific skills, networks, and market knowledge that international labour mobility brings to the UK also play a key role in enhancing the delivery

2 3 4 5

of professional, scientific and technical business services across borders. Financial, insurance, and pension services for example contribute almost two-thirds of the nation’s trade surplus. In the City of London, the global hub of the financial services industry, 41% of the workforce is from outside of the UK3. Without the people needed to facilitate and enhance it, the UK risks diluting its share of a dynamic and growing market. Indeed, technological advances and an emerging global middle class are set to both broaden and deepen the services trade to reach 25% of world trade flows by 2030 4. As such, the Government will need to ensure its post-Brexit vision for the nation, which centralises the importance of free-trade deals around the world, is matched by a pragmatic and flexible approach to labour mobility, as well as on immigration more widely where measured and appropriate. The IoD advocates reducing barriers and restrictions on the movement of foreign workers where this can make a positive contribution to trade and shared prosperity. Doing so will help British businesses offset the costs of Brexit and the potential end to free movement of people while making the most of the UK’s more global focus after the UK leaves the EU. However, it is important to stress that the only means of facilitating this is not simply through our immigration rules or visa reform. Improving knowledge and skills transfer across borders should be as much a long-term aim as it is a short-term one, and tackling this requires more of a fundamental structural shift than just a piecemeal approach. Making it easier to recognise professional qualifications and improving international cooperation between regulators is also a critical piece of the puzzle. These areas for action are a reminder that making trade easier involves both government and non-state actors. Standards can be used for protectionist purposes in keeping out competition, but they are also a crucial area where bilateral and regional collaboration can accelerate the movement of goods, services, capital



of the workforce in the City of London is from outside of the UK and indeed people around the world. Industry groups and accreditation bodies have as much a role to play in making this happen as governments themselves do, particularly in building impetus behind this issue in the first place.

Labour mobility and trade facilitation

Trade in services often relies on face-toface contact and customer interaction5, even amidst advances in remote digital communications. IoD research has found that services businesses are also far less likely to rely on intermediaries for international trade purposes than those exporting goods, while those exporting goods more frequently engaged in B2C for international sales. This further suggests the importance of being able to physically provide services abroad in order to maximise the potential for trade in services going forward. As such, outward-looking Britain needs to put in place provisions to support the importance of people in facilitating trade, building upon the existing requirements already in place which enable a baseline movement of individuals in the services sector. Indeed, labour mobility is a far more nuanced topic than the current arbitrary discourse on setting immigration targets suggests. People are limited in their cross-border movement through numerous means. Countries apply visa entry restrictions, and stay limits for intra-corporate transferees, contractual suppliers and independent service providers, among other bilateral and multilateral agreements. While a certain level of restriction may be desirable – to nurture domestic industries for example – there are advantages of fluid labour flows between countries, particularly for trade. >>

OECD, 2018: https://www.oecd.org/tad/policynotes/oecd-services-trade-restrictiveness-index-policy-note.pdf City of London, 2017: https://www.cityoflondon.gov.uk/business/economic-research-and-information/Pages/economic-statistics.aspx Oxford Economics, 2016: https://www.oxfordeconomics.com/my-oxford/projects/353054 IoD, 2018: https://www.iod.com/Portals/0/PDFs/Campaigns%20and%20Reports/Europe%20and%20trade/Going-global.pdf 5



General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) modes of supply 6 Criteria


Mode 1: Cross-border trade

Service delivered from the territory of one Member into the territory of any other Member

Receiving services from abroad through telecommunications or postal infrastructure e.g. call centre services, market research reports

Mode 2: Consumption abroad

Service delivered in the territory of one Member to the service consumer of any other Member

Consumers or companies making use of a service in another country e.g. tourism, medical patients, students

Mode 3: Commercial presence

Service delivered by a service supplier of one Member, though a commercial presence, in the territory of any other Member

A foreign company establishing a subsidiary or branch in another country to supply services e.g. bank, hotel group

Mode 4: Presence of natural persons

Service delivered by a service supplier of one Member, through the presence of natural persons of a Member in the territory of any other Member

A person travels abroad to supply services in another country e.g. a consultant moving overseas to provide an IT service

General Agreement on Trade in Services

Indeed, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) centralises the baseline importance of labour mobility in trade in services for its Members through the 1995 GATS treaty, which is the main multilateral mechanism for administering and removing barriers to trade in services. The four modes of supply covered by the agreement are listed in table above. The requirements under the GATS are divided into two areas. There are general obligations, which compel members to extend to service suppliers of other members “treatment no less favourable than that accorded to like services and services suppliers of any other country”– essentially prohibiting discriminatory practice. The second set of obligations are specific commitments, which cover areas that are variable, including market access and national treatment, such as restrictions on the number of nondomestic service suppliers in a particular sector. The global economy has however changed substantially since the launch of the GATS. As technology advances, people become more mobile and supply chains become increasingly complex. Key aspects of services, such as intellectual property rights, data protection and visas, are not directly addressed by the GATS and countries committed under the treaty are free to apply more bespoke regimes through visa, intra-company transfer (ICT), and technical skill requirement policies.

Visas and ICTs

The most common mechanism for overseas workers intending to obtain a permit for business purposes is the Tier 2 visa. Tier 2 visas apply to employees coming to the UK in order to fill a vacant position that otherwise could not be filled by a British citizen and have sponsorship from a licensed UK employer. ICT currently account for around 60% of Tier 2 visas issued7. The ICT is vital for businesses that need to send an employee to work temporarily in another country for up to five years. While the visa is important for businesses seeking to tap into the UK’s optimal business environment to trade in services around the world, it also allows for foreign workers to bring family dependents with them to the host country 8. The Tier 1 entrepreneur visa allows for entry of nationals from people outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland who intend to set up or run a business in Britain. In common with the Tier 2 visa, migrants under this scheme are permitted to bring family members to the UK with them. In the year ending June 2018, almost five thousand migrants benefitted from the Tier 1 permit9, which shows the attractiveness of the UK as a place to be an entrepreneur, particularly in trading services across the world. However, visa arrangements extend beyond the business level, and are often a core component of bilateral trade deals. Free trade talks between India and Australia derailed in 2017 because of the latter’s proposal to abolish the main type of temporary work visa for business migrants from India10. Many countries seek labour mobility agreements alongside trade deals to tap into new markets, develop international skills and experience, and, of course, enhance trade flows.

6 WTO: https://www.wto.org/english/tratop_e/serv_e/cbt_course_e/c1s3p1_e.htm and WTO, 2015: https://www.wto.org/english/thewto_e/20y_e/services_brochure2015_e.pdf 7 Home Office, 2018: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-june-2018/why-do-people-come-to-the-uk-2-to-work 8 UK Government: https://www.gov.uk/tier-2-general/family-members 9 Home Office, 2018: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/immigration-statistics-year-ending-june-2018/why-do-people-come-to-the-uk-2-to-work 10 The Indian Minister for External Affairs said the government would review the decision in the “context” of free trade talks. Indians make up one quarter of Australia’s 457 visa holders. The visa is the most common visa for businesses to sponsor skilled temporary workers in Australia. ABC, 2017: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-18/government-abolishing-457visas/8450310 and http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-19/india-says-457-visa-scrapping-could-affect-trade-negotiations/8452098 6

POLICY SPOTLIGHT Qualifications and licenses

The international community recognises the UK’s strength in services trade. The OECD says “the United Kingdom is already one of the most open economies in services”. Its Services Trade Restrictiveness Index (STRI), which assesses the impact of regulatory barriers on a sectoral basis in comparison to other OECD members11, shows Britain has a more liberalised score than the average in all sectors except for air transport. But the areas that score the highest (weakest) for the UK’s STRI ranking are also those in which restrictions on the movement of people are most prominent – accounting, engineering and architecture services. Notably, these are all high-skilled occupations. Labour mobility in professional services – including licensed professions such as auditing, architecture, and other specialist business support roles – is important

The ease of labour mobility goes hand-in-hand with trade in services

because of the need to fill skills gaps, and bring global perspectives for an internationalised industry. Qualifications and licences in regulated sectors, such as legal services, auditing and architecture, are recognised by the EU, and this effectively enhances our services trade with the bloc. That being said, validating qualifications acquired in


third countries needs formal assessment and local professional training12. The OECD findings demonstrate the ease of labour mobility goes hand-in-hand with trade in services.

Trade enhancing

Labour mobility not only facilitates trade, it also enhances it. The boom in UK services trade has gone hand-in-hand with the growth in the UK’s immigration rate over the past two decades. Currently, around 11% of the employed population are non-UK nationals (almost 7% are EU nationals) and many are highly represented across tradable service sector industries13. And it’s through their direct employment, international knowhow, enterprise and networks, that foreign workers are able to open up UK businesses and the wider economy to wider – and more value added – international trading opportunities. >>

11 The OECD’s STRI index ranks member states’ level of regulatory restrictiveness on a scale from 0 to 1. The lower the STRI score in a given sector, the more liberalised the regime. OECD: http://www.oecd.org/trade/topics/services-trade/ 12 http://www.oecd.org/tad/services-trade/STRI_GBR.pdf 13 ONS, 2019: https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/employmentandemployeetypes/bulletins/uklabourmarket/february2019#employment 7



A diverse labour force allows firms to be more productive, increasing the scope for exporting

Immigration grows the domestic labour supply, which can lower the costs involved in searching for workers, and foreign workers also diversify the UK labour market’s skill and experience mix. This creates dividends for firmlevel productivity by lowering operating costs, alleviating recruitment strains, and enhancing the division of labour across a business, which can enable them to scale, and reach out to international markets through trade. Small and medium-sized enterprises in particular find it much harder to manage the costs – and therefore reap

the dividends – of international services trade, largely because they lack the know-how and skills to do so. Indeed, business leaders, particularly in SMEs, often cite an inadequate domestic skills pipeline as a major concern. Around 1 in 2 IoD members believe investing in human capital would be the best way to increase productivity in their organisation, while skills more generally remain a big strain on making enhancements to their business models14. As such, foreign workers with the right skill sets can plug labour market gaps and enable firms to scale. Research shows that a one percent increase in the aggregate share of immigrants in total area population leads to a 0.10% increase in the probability a firm exported some services15.

14 IoD Policy Voice survey, conducted between 2 November - 23 November 2017, 687 respondents 15 Ottaviano, Peri, and Wright, 2016: http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi= 8


IoD members believe investing in human capital would be the best way to increase their productivity



Reaping the benefits of the services trade means keeping the country open to international talent

International workers bring country-specific skillsets and knowledge

More specifically, labour mobility brings knowledge of country-specific legal codes, languages, and working cultures which can all help facilitate bilateral trade deals at both a business and state level. Indeed, with UK businesses and the Government increasingly looking to tap into the economic potential of the now emerged emerging markets, broad-based international expertise will continue to be a major demand of the labour market. Foreign skills can help lower barriers to trade. Labour mobility serves to lift exports to international markets in skills that are culturally, or institutionally, unique. In fact, indicative research shows that a one percentage point increase in immigrants from a country into a local labour market leads firms in that area to export 6 to 10% more services into that country16. In-depth legal knowledge of foreign markets, alongside business contacts and understanding of cultural idiosyncrasies in different corporate environments, is also crucial – and often difficult to bridge without an internationally experienced workforce.

16 17 18 19

International entrepreneurs and talent bring new trading opportunities

Global entrepreneurs within the services sector are drawn to the UK to both start-up businesses, as well as to develop hubs for their established enterprises. This plays an important role in increasing the volume and value of cross-border trade out of the UK, through enterprise and its wider impact in supporting knowledge diffusion throughout the economy. With the UK’s optimal trading geography, time zone, soft power with English law and language, and its competitive business environment – ranked by the World Bank ahead of Germany, France and the Netherlands for doing business17 – the country is well equipped to trade globally. Indeed this gives the UK its comparative advantage in dealing with, for example, international finance. That being said, reaping the benefits of services trade means keeping the country open to international talent and businesses.

Migrants also bring new trading opportunities. One estimate suggests around one in seven UK companies is founded or co-founded by a migrant entrepreneur18. Thus, trading links are indivisible from the ease of labour mobility across borders. Reflecting this, a recent survey of young businesses among the IoD’s membership showed that almost half of entrepreneurs and start-up founders see guaranteeing the movement of labour and EU citizens’ rights as a top Brexit priorities19. >>

The UK is well equipped to trade globally

Ottaviano, Peri, and Wright, 2016: http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi= World Bank, 2019: http://www.worldbank.org/content/dam/doingBusiness/media/Annual-Reports/English/DB2019-report_web-version.pdf Centre for Entrepreneurs, 2015: https://centreforentrepreneurs.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/MigrantEntrepreneursWEB.pdf IoD 99 survey, November 2017 9


POLICY SPOTLIGHT A mobile labour force builds information flows, trust and linkages between countries

Labour mobility also plays a key role in boosting bilateral trading relations. The British South Asian and Caribbean Diasporas, among others, have played an important role in supporting the UK’s international trade in services globally. British governments have recognised the importance of trade promotion in building soft power relations with other countries. For example, the Department for International Trade has appointed nine regional Her Majesty’s Trade Commissioners to develop and strengthen UK trade ties abroad20. Labour mobility also means workers return to their country of origin with new language skills, qualifications, and familiarity of local services, trust, and business insights. This can help to boost trade with their former host countries, as they share and exchange their experiences with local businesses and policymakers. International workers, through their knowledge of UK institutions, sales and sourcing opportunities help to plug information gaps for businesses and governments abroad looking to trade with the UK. International students are also reflective of this. While foreign students’ tuition fees, expenditure, and subsistence spending directly contributed £13.1 billion in export receipts in 2014/521 – young scholars, through education, can also help to boost trade relations on return to their home nations. International student scholarships and programmes are reflective of the attempt to harness this impact, and as British Council research shows, there tends to be a strong correlation between students and trade flows for some nations22. According to the European Commission, one-third of Erasmus students who complete work placements abroad are offered employment with their host company upon graduation, demonstrating international experience is a real asset for businesses and foreign students can provide a pipeline for potential future workers in service trading industries. Universities UK International has said the demand for Erasmus-related skills “is likely to increase as the UK makes its way in the world post-Brexit”23.

20 21 22 23 10

Department for International Trade, 2018: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/737201/HMG_Export_Strategy.pdf Universities UK, 2017: https://www.universitiesuk.ac.uk/policy-and-analysis/reports/Documents/2017/briefing-economic-impact-international-students.pdf British Council, 2012: https://www.britishcouncil.org/sites/default/files/the_shape_of_things_to_come_-_higher_education_global_trends_and_emerging_opportunities_to_2020.pdf The Guardian, 2017: https://www.theguardian.com/higher-education-network/2017/nov/27/study-abroad-is-invaluable-students-deserve-clarity-on-erasmus



Foreign workers help to fill talent and skills gaps in services, and enhance merchandise trade

The services sector is a major contributor to trade in merchandise

International workers contribute to the UK’s trade in services by filling skills gaps in other industrial sectors, thereby enabling resources to be reallocated and refocused into higher-value added, and tradable, services sectors. As a corollary, a more buoyant service industry is then able to add more value to the trade in goods in the agriculture and manufacturing sectors – through research and development, advisory, and technological innovation. Both effects are key to long-term economic development. According to the OECD, Britain’s labour market has highly-educated workers with skills that do not match the jobs available. 40% of workers are either over skilled or underqualified for their jobs24. What’s more, there are entire sectors that would be at risk without immigrant workers. For example, just about all of the seasonal workers required to pick fruit and vegetables in the UK are from Eastern Europe, according to the National Farmers’ Union25, while public services could also be affected by shortages in talent from overseas26. In effect, foreign workers expand the labour market and accelerate the development process by enabling domestic workers to be reallocated to other roles, including into the higher-value added services trade. While the services sector is evidently important in its own right, it is also a major contributor adding value to the trade in merchandise. Examples of such scenarios include when skilled engineers are drafted into the manufacturing process, and when marketing services are deployed for branding agricultural produce. >>

24 OECD, 2017: http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/employment/getting-skills-right-united-kingdom_9789264280489-en#.WhbYfdJl-70#page3 and The Telegraph, 2017: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/11/20/british-workers-skilled-ever-wrong-things/ 25 BBC, 2018: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-44230865 26 The Telegraph, 2017: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/11/02/number-eu-nurses-registering-work-britain-falls-90-per-cent/ 11



Conclusion: Labour mobility must be at the heart of ‘Global Britain’

The Government’s post-Brexit ambition for a free trading ‘Global Britain’ must acknowledge the central importance of labour mobility in international trade. Though reduced tariffs, standardised customs practices, and streamlined regulation all help to facilitate trade flows, they are not the only barriers or on their own sufficient for securing comprehensive trade deals in the modern global economy. The international skills, enterprise, networks, investment, and expertise that immigrants bring – in addition to their impact on boosting business productivity – all play a pivotal role in increasing trade between countries. As the UK looks to boost productivity at home and trade links abroad, labour mobility and international engagement has never been more important. To negotiate new trading relationships and capitalise on new opportunities and markets, the UK will need a strong international work force and generous labour mobility rules. One of the most prominently expressed objectives for Her Majesty’s Government while leaving the European Union is to end the current free movement of EU citizens to the UK. However, as this paper has made clear, rather than enabling free trade, an overly restrictive immigration policy risks undermining the aim to turn this country into a truly ‘Global Britain’. It is vital, therefore, that the Government avoids introducing new labour mobility related non-tariff barriers which would impede our ability to negotiate comprehensive trade agreements with the rest of the world. To some credit, the Government has recognised this in its nascent proposals for the UK’s post-Brexit relationship with the EU. Despite choosing to end free movement of persons, it has recognised the importance of having an agreed framework for labour mobility with the EU to replace this. Moreover, the Government has added that these would be “in line with arrangements the UK might wish to offer other close trading partners in the future”, where they support new and deep trade deals27. This commitment should be pursued and upheld, although not limited simply to trade agreements. The UK’s healthcare agreement with the Philippines is an example of how sectoral deals can and should be struck to respond to needs of the UK labour market as well. The Government will need to ensure its post-Brexit vision for the UK, which acknowledges the central importance of the fluid movement of persons to securing comprehensive free-trade deals around the world, is realised in practice. ‘Global Britain’s’ trade ambitions must be matched by a pragmatic and flexible approach to labour mobility and immigration – both for outbound

and inbound purposes. It is a policy aim which should be communicated to and engage the public from the start, as understanding the link between the two is crucial to wider buy-in. This will be essential for equipping British businesses and our economy to succeed in the global economy and deliver a more prosperous country.

‘Global Britain’s’ trade ambitions must be matched by a pragmatic and flexible approach to labour mobility

27 UK Government, 2018: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/ system/uploads/attachment_data/file/728135/THE_FUTURE_UK-EU_RELATIONSHIP. pdf 12

Allie Renison Head of EU & Trade Policy, IoD

Allie Renison is the Institute of Directors’ Head of EU and Trade Policy, she leads on devising recommendations and representing the voice of members on EU policy matters both to Westminster and Whitehall and with European institutions. She provides the link between business and Government on increasing international trade and has authored a number of reports on trends in both trade and trade policy, as well as running a number of trade missions for IoD members around the world every year. She also routinely provides advocacy for the IoD on a range of regulatory issues in Brussels.


Claudia Catelin EU & Trade Analyst, IoD

Claudia joined the IoD in August 2017 to work on EU and trade policy. Previously, she worked at the American Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and in the Board of Directors at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. She also worked for Newsfirst as French news editor. Claudia has Australian and British citizenship and a Master of Science in European Studies from the London School of Economics. She is fluent in French and Spanish.



Trade and your business

Sign up to Policy Voice to take part in IoD member surveys: iod.com/policyvoice

Our January 2019 Policy Voice survey saw over 1,202 IoD members answer questions on their international trading activities1.

Share of IoD members that export =



Of those IoD members that export


Export services only



Export goods only

Export both goods and services

Top 5 export country markets for IoD members


Regional market breakdown of IoD members’ exporting activities Europe (Non-EU)*









Markets where IoD members have seen most export growth2


North America


Europe (EU)





Australasia & Oceania

32% 39%

Central America & Caribbean

Middle East**




South America



Central America & Caribbean


1% South America


Australasia & Oceania



Middle East**


5% Asia




North America


1 IoD Policy Voice survey, conducted between January 14 - January 19 2019, 1,202 respondents 2 In response to the question: Which regional market has your organisation seen the most growth in sales and exports over the past 12 months? * Including Russia ** Including the Gulf and Turkey, but not including North Africa 13



Exports support The Department for International Trade’s (DIT) Export Strategy details the ways in which government can help your business to export. They are grouped around the four key themes which underpin DIT’s Export Strategy1. Initiatives range from marketing campaigns which promote British exports overseas to trade advisers who provide face-to-face support for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) wishing to develop export plans. Below is a list of exports support initiatives which the Government has committed to providing:


GREAT Campaign UK Export Champions great.gov.uk


IoD members can contact our Business Information Service to access market research report extracts, information about business culture, company listings / accounts from our global company information database, and more. iod.com/research

HMG’s International network - HMTCs, HM Ambassadors & High Commissioners Prime Ministerial Trade Envoys UKEF supplier fairs

DIT Trade Advisers

Inform IoD members can benefit from our Legal Helpline which provides access to an English speaking lawyer in 26 European jurisdictions – including Ireland, France, the Netherlands, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden and so on. iod.com/legalhelpline 14

Intellectual Property Office UKEF Export Finance Managers

Export credit facilities


Direct lending facility Trade finance solutions

1 Department for International Trade, 2018: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/ system/uploads/attachment_data/file/737201/HMG_Export_Strategy.pdf

Knowledge Guidance Support #webackbusiness

Booms. Busts. Upturns. Downturns. Growth. Crashes. We have what business needs to thrive in times like these because whatever the circumstances, here at the IoD – We Back Business.


We Back Business Full Stop.



EU Settlement Scheme A short guide for employers Whilst we cannot know for certain what our relationship with the EU will look like in the coming years, what we do know is that the legalities around living in the UK as an EU citizen are changing. What does this mean for your business? The following no-nonsense guide is designed to help you navigate the Settled Status landscape.

All EU citizens who wish to continue living in the UK after Brexit will need to apply for settled status, which will guarantee their rights to work, study, and get access to healthcare and pension. They will be able to reside in the UK indefinitely after gaining settled status. If they have been living in the UK continuously for 5 years or more, they will be eligible for settled status. If they have lived in the UK for under 5 years, they will be eligible for pre-settled status and will need to apply for settled status once they reach 5 years’ residency. EU citizens who already have permanent residence will need to reapply for settled status.

! 16




of IoD members employ EU citizens*

When do EU citizens need to apply by?

The exact deadline is still subject to the terms on which the UK leaves the EU. If the Withdrawal Agreement is ratified, EU citizens will have until 31 June 2021 to apply. Under a no-deal Brexit scenario, the deadline would shorten to 31 December 2020. Stay up to date with any changes by signing up for Home Office email alerts via gov.uk/eu-settled-status

How to apply

Fill in a short application form online. EU citizens will be asked to verify their identity and nationality, confirm their residence and provide their National Insurance number, and declare any criminal convictions. Individuals will be able to apply for British citizenship 12 months after they obtain settled status. Visit gov.uk/eu-settled-status to find out more information and access the application form. Download the EU Exit: ID Document Check app to start the application

Who needs to apply for settled status? EU, EEA and Swiss citizens

Settled status applications are free

* IoD Policy Voice survey, conducted between 16 November – 30 November 2018, 1141 respondents 17



Brexit checklist The following checklist is an excerpt from the IoD’s ‘Business Planning for Brexit’ guide, which can be downloaded via iod.com. While Brexit has thrown up innumerable issues for firms, these are some key questions your firm could consider as the UK’s exit from the EU draws near:


Have we mapped out all of our potential pinchpoints of exposure to Brexit – from financing and tax liabilities to regulatory compliance requirements and an EU employee audit?

Have we discussed the company’s Brexit plan and risk assessment with the board and shareholders?

How long would we need to make adjustments to cross-border operations and activities under a new economic arrangement between the UK and EU?

Do we know what a no-deal scenario or falling back on World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules would mean for the business?

What are the cash flow implications of continued volatility in the exchange rate and have we made any plans to mitigate this – through hedging/ forward contracts or setting aside enough cash/ capital reserves?

Have we conducted a review of our supply chain – upstream and downstream – to assess the potential for indirect impacts of Brexit changes and looked at alternative suppliers?


Can my business absorb the range of potential cost increases, and/or can we pass any of these on to my customers? What discussions have we had with existing customers, clients and suppliers to discuss different Brexit scenarios and whether contracts should be reviewed now or in the future?

Does my business or that of any of my clients benefit from EU funding – directly or indirectly?

Has anyone in the company been assigned responsibility for Brexit maintenance/planning, and if not should someone be tasked with this?

Have we looked at intermediaries, such as freight forwarders and customs brokers, to help relieve some of the burden of new transport and customs challenges? Is there a need to look at regulatory/licensing requirements in other EU countries and assess what the most cost-effective place to open up a subsidiary/local branch would be?

Should we review or revise forecasts and cash flow predictions?

Are we using the weaker pound as part of our exports sales marketing strategy?

Can we look into existing EU free trade agreements or those currently being negotiated to see if there are preferences for new or existing markets we could make use of to cut entry costs? (By the same token, can we review what agreements or trade preferences my business may be already using in case these are not successfully rolled over after Brexit?).

Have we considered how any intellectual property will continue to be protected in the EU after Brexit? Does the business have any European Community trademarks that will need to be converted into UK ones?

Do we supply any services or have any training/ expertise that we could capitalise on to help other companies with their Brexit planning?

We have secured an exclusive member discount on specialist technical trade and export advice, provided by the Institute of Export. Please get in touch with our Information & Advisory Service to find out more. 020 7451 3100 businessinfo@iod.com iod.com/ias

Have we clarified delivery terms with our customers?

Have we quantified the cost of goods sitting in EU or UK customs for each extra hour or day?

If we are looking to raise finance as part of a medium-term strategy, have we factored Brexit into this?


IoD Brexit Guide March 2019

IoD members are encouraged to refer to our Business Planning for Brexit guide, which is available exclusively to IoD members. It outlines steps on how to prepare your business for Brexit in the event that the UK becomes a ‘third country’ to the EU. The guide covers areas including Goods, Services, Trade with the Rest of the World and People. It also lists resources from the IoD, the UK Government and the European Commission which can help you plan for EU Exit.

Business Planning for Brexit

Knowledge Guidance Support #webackbusiness

We Back Business Full Stop.


The IoD’s work on global business Global business forms one of the key themes of the IoD’s flagship event series, the Open House roadshow. More broadly, we provide members with a range of support and guidance on how leaders can explore business opportunities across the world. Our Information and Advisory Service also provides a wide range of practical support for members, including providing free professional research. More detail can be found at iod.com/ias The IoD is a leading voice on international trade issues, representing our members on various governmental committees. We regularly conduct research seeking new means to further boost UK firms’ potential for international growth. Many of our recent proposals were included in the government’s Export Strategy, which was launched at our HQ in Pall Mall. For more information on our work on global business, please visit iod.com

An Institute of Directors publication

Profile for Institute of Directors

The IoD's Global Business Report  

Global business forms one of the key themes of the IoD’s flagship event series, the Open House roadshow. More broadly, we provide members wi...

The IoD's Global Business Report  

Global business forms one of the key themes of the IoD’s flagship event series, the Open House roadshow. More broadly, we provide members wi...