Belgian businesses will be provided with tools in September so that they can prepare for the possibility of failure at the negotiations on Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union (EU), Federal Labour Minister Kris Peeters announced on Wednesday in Brussels. “We must continue to seek a global agreement with the United Kingdom to organize our post-Brexit collaboration,” Peeters said at the end of a meeting with the European Commission’s chief Brexit negotiator, Michel Barnier, “but at the same time we have to prepare for a scenario of failed negotiations.”
His remarks confirmed a warning issued by the 27 at the European summit in June.
A hard Brexit or a no-deal would have negative consequences for both parties. The Brexit task force put in place two years ago under the aegis of business specialist Paul Buysse, will therefore propose many tools to help businesses in September.
The first is an impact analysis: each company will be able to answer a number of questions on line, based on which it will receive a tailored assessment of Brexit’s potential effect on its activities.
The Economic Affairs Department will open an Internet site to centralise relevant information for companies. A communication campaign will also be run in communities, professional federations and small and medium-sized businesses, which will each receive a communication kit.
Michel Barnier declined to field questions from journalists. He is scheduled to have his first meeting with the U.K.’s new Brexit secretary, Dominic Raab, this week.