By Tom TaitMarch 3, 2019 7:13pmThe logistics industry is in the crosshairs of President Donald Trump’s “worrying” Brexit strategy, with some analysts suggesting the industry could be in for a shock if the United Kingdom leaves the European Union.
In the wake, analysts are forecasting job losses and increased competition as companies scramble to find the right people to do what they do best: ship goods.
The question is whether the country will be able to find enough skilled workers in other parts of the world.
In an article in the March 3, 2018 issue of The Wall St Journal, analyst Thomas B. Jager said that if the UK is forced to leave the EU, companies in the logistics industry could find themselves in a situation where the only way to ship goods is to rely on overseas companies.
The article points to several factors that could trigger such a scenario, including the United States’ “trade war” with China, and concerns about an erosion of the European Single Market.
The article noted that the United Nations Industrial Development Organization estimates that the UK will lose about 200,000 jobs by 2020 and that the country has the fifth-highest trade deficit in the world with the EU.
If this is the case, it could push the industry into a tailspin and result in an economic decline that could push its shares into negative territory, Jager wrote.
“While we are concerned that the U.K. may not be able or willing to hire enough qualified people for these jobs, we believe that there is a good chance that this will be the case for many other companies, even in the short-term,” Jager added.
While the industry is not directly impacted by Brexit, it is the world’s largest exporter of goods and services.
Jager estimated that it could lose about $3 billion annually in sales and that a 30% drop in orders could push total sales down by $1.5 billion a year.
“In the short term, it’s going to have an impact on the industry,” Jagers said.
“In the long-term, it will be a drag on the economy.”
The industry employs more than 4 million people across the world, according to the World Economic Forum.
“We expect that as the U:D.O. moves towards its 2020 goal, it can begin to address some of the concerns of many other industries, but at this stage we expect the U,D.o. to remain very much in the driver’s seat,” said Richard B. Anderson, a vice president at the Boston Consulting Group.
A recent survey by Gartner, a research firm, estimated that the industry will see some 800,000 new jobs lost and that other sectors, including retail and food services, would see an even greater drop in revenue.
“The industry is already feeling the impact of Brexit,” Anderson said.
But while some of that will come from lower orders and fewer employees, he added that the real pain will be felt by companies that rely on the logistics sector for the majority of their revenue.