https://www.spiegel.de/international/eu ... 89999.htmlPredictable Chao
sEurope Braces for the Effects of BrexitHopes for a last minute deal between Britain and the EU are fading and both sides are now preparing for the consequences of an unregulated Brexit, including higher customs duties, long delays and greater uncertainties. There will be plenty of losers, but also some beneficiaries. By DER SPIEGEL Staff
October 08, 2019
It was only just a few days ago that it still seemed as though Britain and the European Union might be able to find an agreement that would prevent the UK's unregulated exit from the EU. But following Prime Minister Boris Johnson's speech at the recent Conservative party conference, an address that was not exactly well received in Brussels, the path toward a deal is rockier than ever. And once again, the scenario of a no-deal Brexit seems the most likely outcome, complete with the "chaos" and "catastrophe" that has been forecast for months.
For the economy, a no-deal Brexit primarily means that everything would become slower and more expensive. Customs duties would be imposed, border inspections introduced, supply chains destroyed and ownership stakes devalued.
Many questions remain unanswered when it comes to how the pound and stock markets might react on the day Britain crashes out of the EU. How much wealth, how many jobs might be lost? The true impact is impossible to predict. It is clear, though, that Europeans would feel the impact of a no-deal Brexit: German customs officers and Irish farmers, auto-industry executives and trade-industry workers, diplomats and bankers. Most fear this day, but there are some who hope to profit from it.The Transportation Manager
In Hoek van Holland, one of Rotterdam's ferry ports, final preparations are under way. Soon, the Stena Hollandica, one of the biggest ferries in the world, will leave for Harwich, a town on England's east coast.
A quarter of an hour before departure, the last truck drives across the ramp, completing a load of freighters that, if lined up end-to-end, would stretch for five-and-a-half kilometers. They are carrying fresh strawberries, tomatoes, lettuce and apples -- easily perishable produce that must reach its destination on time. Every move counts. It takes exactly one minute and thirty seconds for a truck to be checked in for the crossing, a masterly feat of logistics. A no-deal Brexit, though, would almost certainly slow things down.
Should it come to that, every load would have to be individually declared and inspected, which would take between six and 10 minutes per truck, at best, and would result in considerable delays and long traffic jams. Or, to put it in the more precise syntax of Marcel van der Vlugt, a Stena Line executive: "It would be a big problem for us and our customers."The Brexit Diplomat
Gregor Schusterschitz, 49, is Austria's Brexit representative at the EU, and as a result, he has been at work non-stop since he was named to the position in March 2017. He can still vividly remember his first meeting, when he discussed how the EU should prepare itself for a no-deal Brexit with his counterparts from other member states. "At first, with everyone expecting that a deal would be reached, nobody took it seriously," he says. "But we got to work."
Hundreds of meetings with member-state representatives were held. There were seminars and PowerPoint presentations, and there were working groups looking into the most complicated questions: What customs will apply on November 1 if the UK becomes a third country? How will the duties for companies be calculated? And will British workers who continue to live in the EU still be allowed to vote in local elections?