FIPRA CLIENT CALLS: COVID-19 & EU Internal Borders
I was very pleased by the inaugural FIPRA ‘client call’ webinar this morning.
Our aim is to develop on-line conversations as a new vehicle for business updates and discussion about the immediate action agenda on today’s key themes in EU and wider policy.
The subject today was COVID-19 and the EU internal borders: how Europe has created and then quite rapidly reduced internal border blockages linked to COVID-19.
We had the benefit of client inputs during the preparations. We also had the benefit of the presence on the call of Robert Mack from Tetra Pak on the call itself. The resulting ideas will strengthen our operational inputs to the EU and member states in the days ahead.
My key take-away is that the national border controls currently in place are not likely to evaporate in early May. Expect the current arrangements to be extended until any progressive deconfinement is very far advanced.
That means that there remains a premium opportunity today for individual business leaders. Think about taking a higher profile, in briefing the Commission as well as national authorities on what still needs to be made easier for business to flow – AND on what lessons we can already learn form the crisis to date.
Such lessons to learn are not just important for a decade from now, but for today. In the months ahead, we must realistically expect that vaccines are not rolled out this year, and that local second waves of infection can lead to closure of borders all over again.
What happens next?…
The conversation today was under the Chatham House rule, but FIPRA is happy to share more of the detail with other interested players.
We will continue to help our clients with border opening, as well as with the even higher stakes now in play in a recovery – from what restrictions supply localisation may place on corporate trade and investment patterns to how companies can best benefit from the considerable recovery funding coming on-stream from June onwards.
Let me know if you have an interest in the border management issue, for goods or for key personnel.
And feel free also to let me know if you might be interested in future calls: upcoming highlights will be on the digital future post-COVID-19, the German Presidency post-pandemic, the implications for State Aids, and more…