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UK Government announces customs postponement for EU imports

In a statement released on Thursday, 28th April, the UK's Minister for Brexit Opportunities and Government Efficiency, Jacob Rees-Mogg, announced the deferment of "complex and costly" customs checks for imports to the UK

What does this mean?

It means that no further import controls on EU goods entering the UK will be introduced this year. Any controls that have already been implemented will not be changed and will remain in place as they are.

Challenges around the war in Ukraine, rising costs and increases in energy prices have been said to be the reason for this latest move by the UK government, citing that any new administrative burdens would risk disruption at ports and put further pressure on British supply chains. The announcement also states that the delay in introducing new checks is likely to save British businesses up to £1billion in annual costs.

The statement is specifically targeted at the following controls, all of which were scheduled to be introduced in July 2022 but are now on hold:

  • A requirement for further Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) checks on EU imports currently at destination to be moved to Border Control Post (BCP).
  • A requirement for safety and security declarations on EU imports.
  • A requirement for further health certification and SPS checks for EU imports.
  • Prohibitions and restrictions on the import of chilled meats from the EU.

Autumn 2023 is the provisionally revised start date for the additional border controls to be implemented.

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