Can Brexit delay relieve pressure on warehouse storage?

With Brexit delayed once more, is it safe to breathe a sigh of relief when it comes to warehouse logistics?

One of the largest concerns with the 31st of October deadline was its timing. It was scheduled to come just before the three biggest shopping events of the year: November’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday, and December’s Christmas. This would have placed significant strain on warehousing, as many have already reached their capacity with Brexit stockpiling, leaving little room for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Christmas storage. In some cases the inverse is true, with cautious companies holding on to their Brexit stockpile with little room for seasonal increases.

As Brexit is on hold until January 2020 at the very least, November and December’s peaks should be delivered smoothly. With peak season out the way and less chance of crashing out the EU without a deal, will it still be worth preparing for the worst?

Interior of a Rubb warehouse storage building

Speaking to Forwarder Magazine, Peter Ward, CEO of the United Kingdom Warehousing Association (UKWA) thinks that it is.

“It is important that those companies who trade with the EU make every effort to ensure that they have done all that they can to mitigate the effects of Britain’s withdrawal from the EU.”­

Ward went on to explain how the Brexit situation has been exacerbated by already existing issues.

“The warehousing shortage has been driven by several factors, not the least of which is the rapid growth of e-commerce. Additional warehousing is needed, strategically located close to population centres to meet the online consumers’ expectations of same or next-day delivery, and the necessary infrastructure to support these changes simply isn’t there at the moment.”

Aerial shot of Rubb warehouse storage buildings

This is troubling, as UKWA has also predicted that leave or remain, warehouse demands will increase. If the UK does leave, it will require an additional 200 million customs declarations, staggering the whole supply chain and leading to more storage space to offset this. If the UK chooses to remain, the issues outlined above will continue to compound. Whatever the outcome, a storage solution will be required.

In these uncertain times, the shifting goalposts of warehouse demands must be addressed by flexible construction solutions. Rubb prides itself in the adaptability of its fabric structures. Whole Rubb projects can be relocated, expanded, dismantled and stored or even sold to new users. Rubb’s fabric structures represent a stable investment and an ideal solution to the UK’s warehouse issues.