A little different perspective from my day to day life. I work quite a bit in Lesser Developed Countries, large parts of Africa and Asia.
At present I’ve a computer server that’s not being used in one country that could be used in another part of the company in another country. No problem, call DHL and ship it, what’s the big deal?
Get someone to box it up, call DHL, they pick it up and it gets shipped to country B and it is then impounded by customs! Why? The customs paper work is not filled out properly by DHL or someone. Customs won’t release the server unless we pay $6k because someone didn’t tick the correct box saying it was used or second hand equipment. Also, we don’t have the encryption import export license properly approved. Three weeks later after paying $1k we get it extracted from customs and returned to sender. I now have a squabble with DHL over shipping fees and the $1k extraction fee.
Ok, let’s try this again. Fill out the paper work again properly and double and triple check it and get DHL to ship again. It’s meant to be en-route again, crossing my fingers that it gets there.
A couple of years ago I sent one of these servers from UK and it got lost in customs for 8 months. $30k of equipment. No one could find it. I stopped asking and started plan B when it suddenly turned up. I had assumed it ended up on E.Bay, looks like I was being too cynical.
I bought one of the servers locally a year ago and it took six weeks to get a license clearance from Cisco. I had the physical box, but it wouldn’t start. Apart from customs there are restrictions on the type of encryption that can be used in different parts of the world. The project was delayed for six weeks because where I was working was not on the pre-approved list of countries that the US government allows Cisco automatically sell their kit.
In Ireland, I call Dell and it is delivered next day.
Next April I don’t know if I’m going to be able to move equipment between an Irish office and a UK office smoothly. All of these agreements that allow stuff to move about smoothly are tied up in EU regulations - those nasty regulations that people complain about.
Dealing with countries outside of the EU is a massive pain. No one knows what is going to happen next April. This is what people are afraid of. Anyone that deals outside the EU know it is a massive pain and they are terrified of what might happen. And the only plan for how to deal with any of this is that: * someone somewhere will do something about it. They wouldn’t dare not to. *