Walpole and The Brexit Countdown

As the UK counts down to 31st October, we reveal what Walpole is doing to help guard against the effects on the luxury sector of a No Deal Brexit.

Following Helen Brocklebank’s CEO letter on planning for a No Deal Brexit, and the launch, earlier this year, of the latest Walpole economic impact study – we today outline the recent high-level meetings Walpole has undertaken with senior ministers and advisors across key government departments including the Department for International Trade & Investment, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and Department of Media, Cultural and Sport. It is Walpole’s aim to represent the views of our sector and ensure it is as protected as possible in the outcome of a No Deal Brexit, and these meetings are crucial to that objective.

The purpose of the programme of meetings is to highlight the impact of the UK’s luxury sector and the important contribution it makes to the economic prosperity of the country and competitiveness, the role as major employer and champion of British manufacturing, the impact on tourism, and the role it plays in our soft power – with an ultimate mission to gain sector recognition.

Through the meetings, Walpole has:

Raised the very real and significant impact of a no deal Brexit and the cost to the luxury sector – quantifiably the direct cost to exports which would wipe of £6.8 billion, the impact on productivity  and the fully-integrated supply and distribution chains, the ability to attract to the best talent and our ability to be competitive.

Discussed Chinese visas and the need to simplify the visa regime through the recognition of the success of the two-year visa, the introduction of the 10-year visa, and visas for parents of children studying in UK secondary or tertiary education.

Urged government to recognise the soft power value of our sector and the role it plays in promoting the values of quality, creativity and innovation globally – acting as a calling card for Great Britain.

Discussed the need to support a sector that has export growth at the heart of its strategy through the GREAT Campaign, as well working to remove trade barriers in key export markets.

Requested support for Walpole’s international activities, including the annual US Trade Mission, requesting government funding to provide critical support for members taking part.

Promoted sustainability – showcasing the best practice examples across the sector and highlighting the new work stream.

Meetings in July 2019

Graham Stuart MP, Minister for Investment, Department for International Trade

Alexander Kaderbhai, Head of Business Engagement and Policy Team, Trade Diplomacy Department, Foreign & Commonwealth Office

Giles Smith, Deputy Director of Tourism, Heritage and Cultural Diplomacy at DCMS

Seymour Pearman, Senior Manager, National Apprenticeship Service

For more information, please contact Charlotte Keesing.

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