Brexit: Steps you must take if you ship between UK and EU

On B-Day (currently October 31st 2019) and thereafter, businesses won’t be able to ship between the UK and EU in the same way as they have been doing. In order to continue shipping in and out, they’ll need to comply with many of the procedures currently affecting trade with the rest of the world.

New procedures for import/export

Here’s a brief run-down of the changes you need to be aware of and start preparing for now.

  • Obtain an EORI number. You may already have one for your ROW trading, but if you have subsidiaries that trade only with the EU, you’ll need to get new EORI numbers for these too.

  • Select and apply commodity codes and customs procedure codes for your goods. All goods need the correct codes.
    Comply with HMRC rules on valuation of goods imported from the EU.

  • Check if licences are required for the goods, or if there are restrictions on import/export between EU and non-EU countries.

  • Prepare customs declarations and confirm if any reliefs or exemptions apply

  • Prepare to make VAT and Duty payments. VAT will be charged by HMRC at the same rate as if the goods had been purchased in the UK.

  • Set up a deferment account. This lets you defer payment of VAT and Duty, allowing your goods to pass through customs with less delay.

It’s easy to see that if more than a small proportion of your business is with the EU, all this will cause a significant increase in your workload, and have an impact on shipping timescales too. Plan for this.

Actual and potential financial impact

Additionally you should be aware of the impact that will arise on your business due to the new costs incurred because:

  • You’re incurring new duties and taxes when importing and exporting from/to the EU

  • You’re incurring different duties and taxes if you’re operating in the UK after Brexit and importing and exporting from/to the rest of the world

You could also incur unnecessary customs duties and taxes if:

  • You don’t use the right customs processing code (CPC)

  • You don’t link temporary exports and re-imports

  • You don’t claim customs relief

Tools and resources to lessen the impact

These changes will have a significant and possibly damaging impact on many businesses, so to help smooth the way forward, we’ve complied a resource guide listing the government sites and tools you need.

To provide more practical help, we’ve developed a suite of tools that reduce the workload and simplify the extra processes for you. They’ll make it easier to ensure you:

  • electronically transmit all your customs data correctly

  • automatically use the correct customs processing codes (CPCs)

  • correctly link temporary exports and re-imports

  • claim customs relief automatically

To find out more about these tools and the assistance we can provide to keep you on the right side of the new import/export procedures, contact us.