British govt urged to keep barriers on book trade “at an absolute minimum”

As it negotiates Brexit terms with the European Union

Tinashe Mushakavanhu
2 min readMar 4, 2017



When the majority in Britain voted in a referendum to leave the European Union (EU), the decision certainly shook the global power dynamic. But, the real consequences of Brexit are yet to be felt. It is too early and very difficult to make an accurate prognosis, but it is clear, there will be ripple effects on many aspects of British life, including the £4.4bn book and journal industry.

An All Party Parliamentary Group on Publishing (APPG) has recently published a paper calling on Prime Minister Theresa May’s government to keep barriers on trade “at an absolute minimum” for books during negotiations to leave the EU.

They outlined a number of recommendations to tackle post-Brexit challenges which the publishing industry will certainly face. These include:

  • access to funding
  • hiring international talent
  • currency fluctuations
  • a reduced voice in book policies developed in the EU

While book exports are strong and growing across a number of regions, the EU remains Britain’s biggest market for physical book exports. Therefore, continuing access to the market is vital for the industry. Tariffs could reduce the competitiveness of publishers selling to the EU, but non-tariff barriers such as licensing could also add to the cost of exporting to the EU.



Tinashe Mushakavanhu

Notes on literature, media & technology.