Consider Moving Your UK Business to Spain’s EU Wide Market

Businesses in the United Kingdom have recently had to deal with two seismic shifts to their environments.

The covid pandemic has had multiple implications for businesses at all levels. The phasing in of more and more of the Brexit regulations and procedures has also changed the landscape for businesses both large and small.

Some sectors have faced a shortage of labour recently. In some cases, this has been down to travel restrictions imposed by the pandemic or by EU citizens choosing to move back home post Brexit as the exchange rate for money earned in the UK becomes less appealing. With the way the world has now moved many people are also reassessing their personal priorities and making career shifts and geographical moves.

Another people related result of the pandemic has been the enforced move to working from home for businesses where this is possible. This has had the result of opening up a global labour pool for those that are able to do it. An increase in the amount of outsourcing of work that is not a company’s core specialism has also resulted. This means that location can be less of a factor in choosing where to headquarter a commercial venture.

Now that there is no longer seamless movement of goods and services between the EU and the UK there is no longer such an easy access to the EU market for UK based companies. In fact, the BBC recently reported that United Kingdom food and drink exports to the EU halved in the first quarter of 2021 as can be seen in the report here. The BBC also reported that even before Brexit was implemented a third of IOD members were considering relocating to the EU.

Considering all the above it is only good sense for UK based businesses to at least consider and investigate the option of moving operations into an EU member state. This is something that there is evidence of happening already. When talking to Miguel Ramos from Javea Estate Agent he reported that “Since just before Brexit there has been a huge increase in interest in our commercial properties. In fact, transactions in our commercial side have more than doubled in the past three years and a lot of the buyers have come from outside Spain.”

It is critical to enlist specialist advice in terms of the legalities and tax position for example and this article is in no way meant to be a replacement for professional input however there are several interesting factors to consider.

Relocating a business from the UK to Spain gives the immediate advantage of direct access to the 500 plus million market of EU citizens if that is appropriate for your business model.

If you can either provide your services remotely or hire staff that add value to your business by remote working, then limits of location are less of a concern.

There are various schemes set up by the Spanish government that may be advantageous. As an example, it may be worth engaging legal advice around the options for paying tax as a non-resident or for setting up an efficient investment vehicle for your tax liabilities.

There are specialist companies that will help with the move and then as well as the commercial benefits you will be able to tap into the joys of Spain which include:

  • A gorgeous climate
  • World class health services
  • An affordable cost of living
  • Beautiful coast, countryside, and mountain terrain
  • Enviable all-round quality of life