1 January marked the end of the UK’s membership of the EU and the start of major changes for businesses trading goods with EU countries. We summarise the new rules for EU imports and exports.
Read the guidance on importing controlled goods guidance here
Read the guidance on exporting controlled goods here
For non-controlled goods brought from the EU to GB, import controls will apply in three stages: January, April and July 2021.
Some changes will apply to all goods movements and will involve customs declarations, customs duties and VAT on imports, as well as safety and security declarations. There will also be ‘additional requirements’ but these will only affect certain specific goods movements, such as foodstuffs.
Action points to consider now include:
- Economic Operators Registration and Identification (EORI) numbers
From 1 January 2021, an EORI number with the prefix ‘GB’ is needed to move goods between the UK and the EU, unless you only move goods between Northern Ireland and Ireland. Find out more: https://www.gov.uk/eori You must also remember to take both the UK and EU sides of the transaction into account i.e. to comply with EU requirements, you will need an EU EORI number if your business makes customs declarations or gets a customs decision in the EU.
- Using a customs intermediary
Given the complexity of UK and EU customs declarations, you may want to engage a customs intermediary to deal on your behalf. Find out more here
- Postponed VAT accounting for goods imported from the EU
From 1 January 2021, import VAT applies to imports from the EU. Using ‘postponed VAT accounting’ from 1 January 2021 lets you account for import VAT on your VAT return, giving the potential to declare and recover import VAT on the same return. Find out more here
Delaying customs declarations and payment of tariffs When the UK’s full suite of border controls are in place in July 2021, full customs declarations and payment of customs duties must take place when goods are imported from the EU. However, until that date, most traders with a good compliance record can defer declaration and payment for up to six months on imports of standard goods from the EU. Find out more here
This is only a summary of some of the requirements for imports and exports post-Brexit. Use the gov.uk online checker tool to get a personalised list of actions for you and your business.
If you need further advice regarding VAT, customs duty and tax, please contact your RfM advisor.