Trends & Features

Brexit will not affect the FSPAs strategic aims, managing director Jane Montgomery says

The Federation of Sports and Play Associations would like to reassure members that the UK leaving the EU does not affect our strategic aims and the way forward we have agreed to take over the next few years.

The primary concern for businesses within the sports and play sectors will be that the sustained period of growth enjoyed during previous years, which has made our sector the driving force of the well-being economy, can continue without too much disruption as the process of leaving the European Union begins.

Kept up to date
Beyond the immediate concerns about stability, the FSPA will ensure its members are kept up to date with all implications on regulation and every other issue that may affect their operating conditions.

The first thing to remember is that little is expected to change in the immediate future. There will be a negotiating process of up to two years, during which the UK will remain part of the EU and goods will continue to move free of customs clearance formalities or import duties.

What happens after the negotiation phase and the formal UK exit will depend on the terms of the negotiations between the UK and European Council and there has been a lot of speculation about what free trade agreements might be possible.

Exit outcome
Once the UK exits the EU, it’s likely goods will have to undergo some form of customs clearance process, both when goods leave the UK and on arrival in the destination country, regardless of whether any import duty would be chargeable.

All the free trade agreements currently in place with the EU do have this requirement, so it would be prudent to plan for the longer term for this.

With regard to documentation, this will also depend on the outcome and detail of the exit negotiations, but is unlikely that it will be reduced in terms of quantity and complexity.

In the meantime, it would be wise to communicate with your EU clients to reassure them of your continuing commitment to them and calm any nerves or fears they may have.

The FSPA believes we are still well positioned in the heart of the sports and play industries and we reaffirm our commitment to represent and promote expertise on behalf of UK sports and play businesses.

Same aims
Our aims remain the same:

• To represent 14 associations across the sports and play sectors.

• To provide approximately 500 member companies with a valuable and unique service.

• To act as the voice of the UK sports and play industries.

• To liaise with UK government and the EU Commission on all legislative issues directly affecting association members.

• To promote expertise on behalf of UK sports and play businesses.

• To work with UK government partners, governing bodies and national associations on behalf of member companies.

• To actively lobby government on matters affecting its associations as and before they arise in the UK.

• To remain at the forefront of strategic thinking in Whitehall and Brussels as members of both the Federation of the European Sporting Goods Industry
and the Federation of the European Play industry.

We will continue to work together with members to achieve these aims.

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