What does that mean for Brexit?
The Withdrawal Bill, previously approved by the EU and put forward to parliament by the government, will now almost certainly gain enough votes to be approved. It also means that a 'No Deal' is extremely unlikely now.
What you need to know
Following the approval of the withdrawal bill, which legally has to be passed by January 29th 2020, an implementation period would be entered during which nothing changes from a trade point of view until at least December 31st 2020, when the UK would 'physically' leave the EU. There is an option to extend this transition period for a further two years to December 31st 2022; this option would need to be triggered by July 1st 2020.
At the time of writing, the government are planning to add a new clause to the Withdrawal Bill to rule out any such extension.
During this implementation period, the hard work will start behind the scenes with further negotiations over the final exit deal (the Withdrawal Bill just outlines the bare basics). The UK and the EU will also need to decide whether there will be a Free Trade Deal.
It is almost certain, unless there is a major shift in direction, that customs entries will be required for UK/EU trade after this period is over.
One of the most contested subjects around Brexit is how trade between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, Europe and the UK will be structured.
Where are we at with this?
The current plans still have some cause for concern. Although the customs processes are easily solved, goods that are ‘at risk’ of entering the EU (Republic of Ireland) from Northern Ireland still will pose a problem. A joint committee will be working on the final plans during the implementation period.
What you need to do
To avoid any potential delays to your shipments, please provide us with key information here.
See below three very important yet easy steps you can easily do now to prepare – and feel your best come crunch date!
1. Apply for an EORI Number
Many businesses have now been automatically issued with EORI numbers. However, if you did not already get yours, this really could not be easier - if you want to trade with the EU after Brexit, you will need one! This number will need to be quoted on import & export customs declarations.
You can apply for an EORI number HERE - It only takes 5-10 minutes.
2. If you currently import from mainland EU into the UK – Apply for TSP.
TSP (Transitional Simplified Procedure) was designed by the government to offer a frictionless solution for UK imports and to avoid any bottlenecks at major EU entry ports such as Dover.
Rather than having to arrange for an import customs entry for your goods, you simply need to quote your EORI number!
Apply via the HMRC website HERE.
- You will need a Customs Deferment Account to pay any import duty due
- The business should be established in the UK
- HMRC will expect you to keep records of your imports coming in via TSP and
- You will need to submit a TSP return by the 4th working day of the following month (first declaration suspended for six months).
3. Find out what Customs Tariff codes apply to your products
These will need to be declared on any import/export declarations to HMRC for each movement unless you have TSP for imports, in which case you only need to make one declaration a month.
The tariff code will determine what percentage of import duty you will need to pay, so it’s important to get it right!
If you are unsure which tariff code is correct, you can email details to HMRC.
Finally, ensure that your EU Customers/Suppliers are aware that they may need to arrange import/export customs declarations on the EU Mainland.
If you have questions or would like to chat through possible Brexit planning, please contact our dedicated team here.
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