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Brexit Forum for Publishers announced

Brexit Forum for Publishers announced

The Bookseller MPU Brexit Forum (2).png

An urgent programme of work to support the publishing industry with the core legal and logistical challenges of a No Deal Brexit has been convened by the Publishers Association, with a free industry-wide event being held on Thursday 10th October at the Barbican Centre in London.

The Brexit Forum for Publishers will focus on three core priorities for the industry: movement of goods, intellectual property and cross-border data flows. A range of experts will speak and take questions at the free event, which will be open to all – including businesses that are not members of the Publishers Association. It will be live-streamed so that publishers around the UK can access it.

Crucially, publishers will also be able to apply to access free legal advice clinics as part of the programme of work, which has been convened after a successful funding application to the Business Readiness Fund managed by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

Stephen Lotinga, Chief Executive of the Publishers Association, said: 

“We know just how concerned publishers are about the potential impact of a No Deal Brexit on their businesses. We are pleased to be able to expand on our previous member-focused advice in this area by offering this urgent government-funded programme of work to the entire industry.

“We have homed in on the three areas where publishers would most benefit from accessible sector-specific advice on the ramifications of no deal and built this work around those topics, drawing on a host of legal and practical expert advice. Beyond the Brexit Forum itself, free legal one-to-one advice clinics and a downloadable toolkit will be made available. I encourage any publishers with Brexit-related concerns and questions to attend the Forum and register their interest for the legal clinics.”

Event details:
  • Brexit Forum for Publishers 
  • Thursday 10th October, 8:30am-1pm (Breakfast and mid-morning refreshments provided) 
  • Barbican Centre, Silk St, London EC2Y 8DS
  • Register online
Legal advice clinics:

Applications for free private Brexit legal clinics are now open:

These clinics will be provided by senior lawyers at Fieldfisher who will give you practical and specific advice on how to prepare your business for a No Deal Brexit.

Clinics are open to all publishing houses on a first-come, first-served basis. Each clinic will last up to an hour and can take place in person or over the phone.



Ruth Howells, Deputy Director of External Affairs, the Publishers Association 

  • d: +44 (0)20 7089 5829 
  • m: +44 (0)7827 089 058
  • e: 
  • w: 


Notes to Editors  

Key Topics
Movement of Goods

The UK is the biggest exporter of physical books in the world, with EU exports worth £460m in 2018. Sector-specific guidance on customs delays, transit, export controls, rules of origin, and customs declarations would help to see this success continue. Books are not subject to tariffs, but there will be implications for production lines. Publishers would also welcome guidance on exporting novelty items (i.e. toys relating to children’s books) whilst managing EU Regulations.

Intellectual Property

Publishing is driven by intellectual property. The UK’s “no-deal” preparation papers cite a possible unreciprocated exhaustion regime, where the UK loses reciprocal rights for parallel exports. A legal opinion covering the immediate implications of this, and for protections on Trade-Marks and Designs, would be helpful.

Cross Border Data Flows

As international businesses trading rights around the world, publishers must ensure smooth data transfers from the EU to the UK in the event of “no-deal”. Identifying and implementing the necessary contractual clauses to achieve this may be a challenge for some publishers. Advice would, therefore, focus on industry-specific risks and workarounds.

About the Publishers Association

The Publishers Association represents book and journal publishers in the UK, spanning fiction and non-fiction, academic and education publishing in print and digital. UK publishing has a turnover of £6bn, with export income accounting for almost 60% of revenues. Our membership includes global companies such as Elsevier, Wiley, Pearson, Penguin Random House and Hachette, as well as many independent publishing houses and university presses. Our objective as an association is to provide our members with the influence, insight and support necessary to compete and prosper. | @PublishersAssoc