Sailors could be ‘stranded’ Following Brexit, authorities warn
The RYA and British Marine have joined forces to heap pressure on the UK Governmentover its failure to assist sailors who might be”stranded” after the UK renders the EU.
The two organisations warn that returning UK leisure boaters face being struck with potentially thousands of pounds in extra costs after the conclusion of the Brexit transition period, unless the Government acts.
The RYA’s Manager of External Affairs, Howard Pridding, said:”We’re happy thatthe Treasury has listened to our concerns, however a 1 year extension remains wholly shortofthe three-year transitional arrangement that’s needed, and satisfying the other conditions of RGR is causing additional uncertainty.
“Recreational angling is a seasonal market and transferring ships is influenced by weather conditions and other safety related issues. The Covid-19 situation also accomplishes this and boatowners will need a sensible transitional period to establish a date ofexport to qualify for RGR.”
He said the RYA and British Marine desired a three-year extension to 2023.
The Cruising Association has also been lobbying Governmenton the problem and stated “One year is unlikely to be adequate for many boatowners to return their boats to the UK.
“As an instance, many averaged sized sailing yachts thatare based in Greece could have real troubles sailing back from Greece into the UK by the end of 2021,particularly since the Covid crisis is making global travel and sailing from country to country a lot more diffi cult.
“Can the updated HMRC position cover boats thathave been outside the UK for many years? The Cruising Association has members thathave maintained their boats in Greece and other EU nations for more than 10 years.
A recent poll carried outby the RYA revealed that 917,479 recreational boaters railroad in EU27 waters.
The ruling also applies to UK-owned ships thathave never been in the united kingdom, as HMRC officials have said thata vessel needs to have been in the united kingdom in the three years prior to the date of import. The’date ofexport’ are the date the boat last left the UK.
Itwould notaffectboatowners who are established outside the UK, UK-based ships visiting the EU for up to 18 months, boats kept from the EU27 whose owners don’t have any intention of bringing the boatback to the UK and boats lying elsewhere in the world. She cautioned:”For UK brokers and distributors in the marine industry there remains doubtand confusion as to where they stand.
“There is a high probability thatcurrent VAT-paid boats (which will no more have EU27 VAT Paid Status following Brexit) will be devalued and eventually become less attractive to buyers.”