Is there any cause to be positive?
Brexit is creating uncertainty for how car transportation companies importing from the UK will operate in the future. The threat of ‘no deal’ is leading to doom and gloom forecasts, but still I think there are reasons to be positive. At least in the short term.
Even with a Brexit deal, there will probably be problems for just about every business in Ireland. The Irish car industry will almost certainly never be same again, but we can take some comfort from the fact that the EU is working hard with our own government to try and address all the areas of concern that threaten to damage the Irish economy.
Fast car transportation turnaround is the key
Our business is strongly linked to the UK car market, so whatever happens there always has a big effect on our operations. In the foreseeable future there will always be a demand for used cars from the UK. In what is becoming a somewhat depressed UK economy, people are turning from new cars to used cars and this is going to increasingly affect the supply and therefore the price of used cars in the Irish market.
And as things further tighten and margins narrow, dealers will have to rely on faster and faster turnaround times for transportation and delivery of cars from the UK. This has always been a key strength of Eirtrans. And iit will be an even more important string to our bow going forward. We can always guarantee delivery of new cars in under 10 days and mostly we can deliver within 6 days.
What some Irish car industry voices are saying
As far as the new car market is concerned, Brexit will create problems, but even so, many leading voices in the industry are upbeat. For example, Ian Corbett of Toyota Ireland recently told the Sunday Independent that he didn’t expect to experience any immediate problems:
“In the short term, we don’t expect any changes to the price of our vehicles, but will await developments to see the impact in the medium term.”
Alan Nolan of SIMI was similarly positive, although he flagged up current uncertainty as a problem factor:
“The Brexit news is likely to produce all sorts of worrisome, even ill-founded scenarios and predictions that will simply add unnecessary worry and confusion and in a recovering economy it is clearly most unwelcome.”
In the same newspaper, James McCarthy, MD of Nissan Ireland was upbeat about the scenario for new cars in Ireland:
“The factors that are driving new car sales are largely unaffected by Brexit, these include a pet up demand for cars over the past number of years. I have every confidence that people and business will find a rational way of dealing with the consequences of what seems to me to be the irrational decision of the British electorate.”
Staying true to our brand values
Our own car transportation company Eirtrans has similar cause to be optimistic. We don’t have a crystal ball and we can’t read the future. We will just continue to play to the strengths that have served us so well up to now – a clearly defined and niche business offering and strong company values that put customers at the very centre of the picture.
The Brexit situation is changing from day to day and I expect to be providing regular updates on how things are affecting us at Eirtrans. But right now we are doing very well our ‘business as usual’ attitude is serving us very well.