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U.K. Businesses Drowning in Red Tape Under Brexit Border Rules

  • Biggest employers struggle most with fine print in trade deal
  • Port delays and paperwork prompt some to give up exporting
A truck driver hands over paperwork to a policeman before entering the Port of Dover in U.K., on Jan. 5.
A truck driver hands over paperwork to a policeman before entering the Port of Dover in U.K., on Jan. 5.Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg
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While the mile-long lines of trucks have dissipated at ports, U.K. businesses are waking up to less visible forms of friction at the border with the European Union that may cause more enduring damage.

From health certificates to new taxes and additional paperwork, the cost of moving goods across the English Channel is rising due to Britain’s exit from the EU. Just 6% of firms told the Bank of England they were fully prepared for what was to come, and the headaches are just starting less than two weeks into the new system.