The UK Government is set to formally exit the European Union on January 31st. We share the latest on Brexit, and the implications for the art market.
What's the latest?
The meaning of Christmas changed for many in the UK in December 2019. Far from families coming together to share the joys of Christmas, the UK was enveloped in a divisive General Election that was largely seen as a second referendum on Brexit.
Results gave the Conservative’s their largest majority since 1987 and, within a week of forming a Government, Boris Johnson’s Brexit Withdrawal Bill was passed, paving the way for the UK to leave the European Union on January 31st.
What does this mean?
Passing of the Withdrawal agreement allows the Government to formally exit the European Union on January 31st and enter what is known as the “transition period”. Between 31st January 2020 and 31st December 2020 the UK will negotiate its future relationship with the EU. During this period the UK will cease to be a member of all EU political Institutions, but will continue to be subject to EU rules and remain a member of the single market and customs union.
What is the impact on the Art Market?
During this period, current rules and regulations regarding import and export of works to/from the European Union will remain in place. In theory, costs and transit times should remain unaffected; however, the uncertainty surrounding our future relationship has already forced logistics companies to review their scheduling and costs in anticipation of significant changes to current arrangements. A source close to negotiations has also suggested no provision is currently being made for the art market to form part of trade negotiations, so any granular clarity on import VAT and duty for example, will largely be unknown until the trade agreement is drafted toward the end of this year.
ARTA will continue to remain up to date with negotiations and notify our clients with any relevant information as they continue. For all enquiries, please contact us: