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International holidays that affect your supply chain

International holidays that affect your supply chain

International holidays that affect your supply chain

By Jenny Hooper, May 8, 2019, Category: General News

When focusing on the small details of freight shipping, it can be easy to sometimes forget about upcoming international holidays that can affect your supply chain. A reliable freight forwarding company should be aware of the below holidays and how/if they will affect the freight services they can provide.

1. Labour day

Labour day is a holiday celebrated by many international countries including America, Slovenia, Russia and Switzerland. The exact date of the holiday differs between countries, in America, it takes place on the first day of September while for the majority of European counties, such as Slovenia, the holiday takes place on the 1st and 2nd of May.

2. Summer bank holidays

Freight shipping usually peaks during mid-August to mid-October and during this time the demand for shipping is incredibly high as consumers prepare for their summer holidays and begin Christmas shopping. August 28th is a bank holiday in both Canada and the UK and must be remembered when organising freight shipping during this busy period.

3. Independence days

If you are not a resident of a country it can be hard to remember when or if it has an independence day. For example, the 4th of July weekend in the United States is a big independence day holiday and could cause delays in a supply chain, other large independence day holidays include the Indian independence day on August 1st, Chinese independence day on October 1st and June 12th for the Philippines independence day.

To avoid such holiday days affecting your supply chains, it is important to work with a knowledgeable and expert freight forwarding company like Independent Freight. For more information on freight services, contact a member of Independent Freight now!

How to Prepare Your Business for Brexit

How to Prepare Your Business for Brexit

How to Prepare Your Business for Brexit

By Jenny Hooper, March 3, 2019, Category: General News

With a lot of uncertainty surrounding Brexit, small British businesses are worried about the massive risks it entails. While waiting for the negotiations to resolve, preparing a plan can ensure that your business will be able to cope with the effects of Brexit, especially when it comes to international trade.

Changing trade rules

If Britain decides to leave the European Union without a deal, the expected two-year transition will be lost and the World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules will be applied. Currently, imports and exports between the UK and EU do not require inspection at the border and no tariffs are being imposed. However, if WTO rules are executed, goods transferred through freight shipping will be subject to custom checks and taxes, resulting in additional costs and prolonging the process times at the border. To manage the increased costs, make sure to update your pricing structure and to streamline your operations for greater efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

Review your supply chain

With the fluctuating sterling, the supply chains of most UK businesses become more expensive, especially those who have suppliers based in the EU. To reduce the costs and to minimise disruption in your business, consider sourcing products within the UK. Paying in one currency can reduce the risk of uncertainty. However, if outsourcing is necessary, try to strengthen your relationship with your existing suppliers to negotiate terms that will be beneficial to your business.

Non-EU Markets

We have always specialised in shipping to Non-EU countries and have over the last 15 years supported a range of businesses with complex customs procedures to many markets including USA, the Middle East, India, China and any other destinations. So, if your business is looking to develop new markets outside of the EU then we can offer support in this area in terms of both Sea and Air Freight.

Independent Freight are an HMRC Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) in both Customs and Security offering affordable logistics management solutions. We assure that our customs controls and procedures are highly efficient, accurate and fully compliant. For more details about our services, contact us today on +44(0) 2476 343037 or email us at jenny@independent-freight.com.

Imports and Exports After Brexit: What is UK’s Trade Strategy?

Imports and Exports After Brexit: What is UK’s Trade Strategy?

Imports and Exports After Brexit: What is UK’s Trade Strategy?

By Jenny Hooper, Jan 30, 2019, Category: General News

Here is the deal: over half of the UK’s imports come from the other 27 nations in the EU, whereas almost half of the UK’s exports go to the EU. Predictably, by the end of 2020 when Brexit finally takes effect, this will all be up for an unpleasant renegotiation.

Small and medium-sized businesses in the UK have long since warned that they expect trade to be reduced when Brexit finally pushes through. This prospect was supported by the most obvious and immediate effect of the referendum result, which was the lowered value of the pound. It’s worth noting that a currency’s value can be an immense reflection of the general consensus on its economic future, thus, experts believe that Brexit means a slowing economy. Simply put, those businesses that depend on imported goods and raw materials from outside the UK face an increase in the cost of doing business.

The customs union

Britain is also a part of the customs union, which means that it enjoys the advantages of trade liberalisation or the easy transit of goods across national borders. The thing is, UK’s separation to the customs union may also be another outcome once Brexit takes hold. This would result in the UK losing the benefits of free trade and suffering a much harder process for goods to travel.

Especially for SMEs with complex supply chains, trading will likely involve a great deal more paperwork, making it almost impossible to do business.

UK’s Trade Strategy

The British Chamber of Commerce (BCC) continues to encourage its members to be ‘more proactive’. Additionally, it is advised that as a general approach to trade, retaining the current trade engagements could serve as a useful principle after Brexit for the UK. This means that since all of the UK’s trade agreements are via the EU, maintaining all of its current FTAs would mean that there would be no change in this respect as all existing trade arrangements would remain in place.

While this strategy is unlikely to be that easy to achieve, there is the possibility that some of the other nations could find it easier to do a trade deal with the UK since it does not represent 28 different national interests.

Independent Freight Solutions Ltd is an Authorised Economic Operator (AEO). We are part of an internationally recognised quality mark that indicates our control and procedures for both Customs and Security are secure, highly efficient, accurate and fully compliant. To know more about services, feel free to give us a call on +44(0)2476 343037 or email us at jenny@independent-freight.com.

UK and EU Trade: The Economic Impact of Brexit

UK and EU Trade: The Economic Impact of Brexit


By Jenny Hooper, Jan 21, 2019, Category: General News

After the Brexit referendum, a slew of negotiations being discussed today either produce uncertainty or assurance to millions of businesses in the UK. There are a lot of economic implications, especially for the industrial trade, that compel SMEs to conduct risk assessments to ensure that they’ll operate legal, highly efficient business procedures in a post-Brexit world.

Depending on the type of Brexit deal we get the UK could lose access to the Single Market and Customs Union. Having access to these ensures frictionless trade, in not just avoiding tariffs but the invisible barriers as well such as avoiding origin checks, customs declarations and additional paperwork. If the UK fails to agree any deal with the EU then it will resort to trading under WTO rules with EU members states in the same way it does with other Non EU countries.

Under these rules, businesses that import and export with EU member states may have to put in place similar procedures to those already in place for Non EU imports and exports. Your customers and suppliers in the EU will also need to implement similar procedures on all goods consigned from and to the UK.

This will obviously have a knock on affect with the freight and logistics industry, under a no deal Brexit it is anticipated that there will be an additional 200 million customs declarations. We had hoped that by this stage we would have a much better understanding of what type of deal we will get and what this would mean in terms process and procedures after the 29 March 2018.

We would like to reassure all our customers that Independent Freight is ready for the worse outcome of a no deal Brexit and will be ready to advice and guide all our customers through any processes whatever the outcome.

Independent Freight Solutions Ltd is an HMRC Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) in both Customs and Security offering different cost-effective logistics management solutions. Our internationally recognised quality mark indicates that our role in the International Supply Chain is secure and that our customs controls and procedures are highly efficient, accurate and fully compliant. Contact us today on +44(0)2476 343037 or email us at jenny@independent-freight.com for more information about our services.