British and German business organizations are allying to call for Brexit negotiators to take a trade-focused approach to the UK's exit from the European Union.
The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) and the Association of German Chambers of Commerce (DIHK) have urged UK delegates and their EU counterparts to do more to foster an atmosphere of mutual trust and constructive dialogue in their ongoing talks, with the aim of delivering greater clarity and certainty for trading businesses across Europe.
A recent BCC survey have revealed that 68 per cent of British businesses are keen to see a transition period of at least three years to lessen the impact of Brexit on trading conditions, while both German and British companies are calling for greater clarity on the overall shape of the final settlement.
Concerns have been raised that many business-critical aspects of the withdrawal process agreement are yet to be resolved - including the rights of expat workers, future customs arrangements and tax procedures - and a desire is emerging for talks to progress towards these key issues as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, a DIHK survey has revealed that the business outlook of companies engaged in trade with the UK is worsening, due to the expectation of cost burdens from limits on free movement of workers, taxes and tariffs resulting from Brexit.
Dr Adam Marshall, director general of the British Chambers of Commerce, said: "As Brexit talks continue, it's clear that companies in the UK and on the continent all want economic issues to rise to the top of the negotiations agenda.
"There is real business appetite from both sides for a focus on practical, day-to-day business concerns, and a desire for clarity on future trading arrangements."
Britain is currently the third-largest market for German goods exports, while Germany is the UK's second-largest goods and services export destination.