As a result of Brexit, and the UK’s departure from the EU customs union, customs checks are now required, and customs paperwork must be completed and submitted whenever goods move between GB and the EU.
New customs checks were implemented almost immediately by the EU covering British exports to the EU, which caused delays for UK exports in January 2021. However, the UK Government delayed checks on imports from the EU to Britain. These have finally been introduced from 1 January 2022.
It is feared the new UK customs checks could create delays as businesses in GB and the EU are not fully prepared for the changes. Any delays at UK customs will add to the challenges already faced by businesses struggling with worldwide supply chain issues.
What are the changes from 1 January 2022?
From 1 January 2022, businesses exporting goods from the EU to GB will have to make full customs declarations and be able to prove the origin of the items they are exporting to GB.
Businesses will no longer be allowed to defer completion of customs declarations, which they previously could in 2021, using the Delayed Declaration Scheme.
It is estimated that the number of customs declarations needing to be processed will rise from an estimated 48m a year to 250m.
Declarations in relation to the rules of origin must be completed to determine whether customs tariffs are applicable or not. A number of commodity codes attached to goods have recently changed so extra attention will be needed to ensure correct categorisation.
EU suppliers of agri-food products into Britain will have to pre-notify the authorities of any exports.
Procedures at UK ports
UK ports will be using different methods to complete the necessary customs checks on imports from the EU.
Under “pre-lodgement”, logistics companies will need to pre-lodge customs declarations for the goods they are carrying into GB, using the Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS). This will require a Government Gateway User ID and a GB EORI number.
GVMS generates a Goods Movement Reference (GMR) number, that links together all the different customs declaration references for a particular shipment. Lorry drivers will need a GMR before they will be allowed to board a ferry heading to a GB port using the “pre-lodgement” model.
GVMS will notify the haulier whether any physical customs checks are required by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) and at which location the checks will need to take place.
GVMS-linked ports provide the Office of Transit function “digitally”. This means that lorries do not need to pass physically via an Office of Transit, unless notified via GVMS.
Common ports such as Dover and Folkestone will be operating GVMS. A list of UK ports using GVMS and providing Digital Offices of Transit can be found on the Gov.uk website.
Some GB ports will be using a temporary storage model, whereby customs formalities are completed for the imported EU goods while they are in storage at that port. There is a maximum time limit of 90 days to complete this process.
Animal and plant products
From 1 July 2022, extra controls on products of an animal or plant origin will come into force. Export health certificates and phytosanitary certificates will be required for all such consignments. Physical checks could take place on arrival of any importation of plant/animal products. Safety and security declarations on imports will also be required.
If you have queries regarding customs documentation or importing from the EU we can assist you. Contact us at Tudor International Freight, on 0333 1234 747 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Us - Tudor International Freight
Established in Horsforth, Leeds, back in 1991, we are a logistics company who are experts in road, air and sea freight. We transport goods to most major cities, towns and suburbs across all 6 continents. We go over and above to ensure that our client’s products, goods and cargo are transported around the world safely and successfully. We are a family business, who are still based in Horsforth, Leeds, West Yorkshire.