JD Sports to open EU warehouse in response to Brexit ‘redtape’

Sports-fashion retailer JD Sports has announced plans to open an EU distribution centre to address new Brexit redtape and fees.

Peter Cowgill, chairman of JD Sports, told the BBC that red tape and delays to international shipping means “double-digit millions” in additional costs.

He claimed that there isn’t real free trade with the EU because imported items from East Asia incur fees when UK retailers ship to stores in Europe.

In a BBC interview, the JD Sports chairman said that the new warehouse, which would employ around 1000 people, makes “a lot of economic sense.”

Although an EU-based warehouse wouldn’t mean the closure of JD Sports’ existing Rochdale warehouse, it would mean a number of jobs would need to transfer to Europe.

Cowgill also warned that the UK needed a complete overhaul of business rates and rents if the High Street was to survive.

"It is basic economics," he said. "Bricks and mortar retailing is becoming uneconomic."

Post-Brexit rules have also seen more than a third of UK consumers stop purchasing goods from the EU, with many put off by new costs and delays.

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