Important update for Transport and Logistics // Manufacturing Businesses
HMRC published a letter on 4 December 2018, listing three things that businesses should be doing now to prepare for the possibility of a Brexit Day One No Deal scenario. This is aimed at supporting businesses that currently trade in goods with the EU.
All UK VAT registered businesses that trade in goods with the EU only should receive the letter by post in the coming days. This is a follow up to the letter these businesses should have received in September.
Estimates are that approximately 255m annual declarations will be made after Brexit, up from 55m currently with some 145,000 businesses being required to submit declarations for the first time.
Until such time that a Brexit deal is agreed by the UK and the EU, it is important that businesses should continue to prepare for a no deal scenario.
Three Recommended Actions to take now
1 – Obtain an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number
An EORI will be required to continue to import or export goods with EU Member States after 29 March 2019 should there be a no deal scenario and also to apply for any specific customs authorisations required within the business for the movement of goods.
2 – Will customs declarations need to be made?
Decide whether customs declarations will be made in house using specialist software or by engaging a third party customs broker/freight agent.
If made in house, software providers should be contacted now to ensure the software meets the needs of your business depending on whether import or export declarations, or both, will be made. If using a broker/agent, they should be contacted now to check what information is required from you.
3 – Check if additional information is required to be provided in respect of completing safety and security declarations
Contact whoever is moving goods on your behalf to check if additional information is required to be provided in respect of completing safety and security declarations on your behalf or whether these are required to be submitted by you.
Given the end of March is not far away, it is expected that businesses are already taking steps to plan ahead of Brexit, however, HMRC have now highlighted some specific areas of focus. In addition to this, HMRC have reiterated the availability of grants for funding of training and software improvements for businesses completing customs declarations.
It should also be noted that HMRC are now phasing in the new Customs Declaration Service (CDS) to replace the existing Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system with the majority of importers expected to start using CDS in early 2019. CDS is intended to cope with the expected increase in declarations and a new import Trade Tariff now exists for CDS. For now, CHIEF will run parallel with CDS until such time that all import/export businesses are migrated to CDS.
We recommend that steps are now taken to address the above points. Should assistance or further information be required, please contact your Menzies advisor who can provide support.