Do you have a backlog of customs declarations you need to clear?
Since January 1st, new border controls have been introduced in stages for imports to Great Britain from the European Union. With border controls now in place with the free trade agreement, customs declarations are needed for all imports to Great Britain. If you’ve chosen to delay making customs declarations on non-controlled goods you’ve imported from the EU this year, you will need to make a supplementary declaration. These are due within 175 days of your shipment arriving in GB – so if you imported anything in January 2021, your supplementary declaration is now due.
What do I need to do?
Most people use an intermediary such as a customs agent to deal with their declarations. If you have an intermediary, or if you used a service such as a courier or freight forwarder to move your goods, you should have agreed with them who will be making the declaration. If you chose to delay your declarations, you should have kept detailed records on your imported goods at the time of import – an intermediary will need this information to make a declaration on your behalf. There is still time to ask an agent to make the supplementary declaration for you, even if you have made your own entry in the declarant’s records. If you are delaying your declarations, you will need a duty deferment account. Even if you are using an intermediary, most will require you to have your own account. You should check this with your intermediary if they haven’t already advised you to set one up. A duty deferment account allows you to make one payment each month for any imports rather than paying every time you import goods. This can be helpful in managing your cashflow.
Below are some answers to frequently asked questions asked about customs declarations and international trade documents
Question: Can I make my own import declarations?
Answer: If your business imports goods into GB from the EU, you need to decide who is submitting your declarations to HMRC. Most businesses employ specialists to do this for them. It is a very time-consuming process and we would encourage you to evaluate how much effort it demands to submit declarations yourself. Choosing to do-it-yourself, you will need to secure access and software to use the CHIEF (Customs Handling of Import Export Freight) system and soon its replacement, called CDS or Customs Declaration Service.
Question: How do I know what duty to pay?
Answer: As the importer, you may need to pay tax and duty on your goods. The customs duty you need to pay will depend on the classification of the goods being imported. See www.gov.uk/trade-tariff for the UK Global Online Tariff tool to help you classify your goods, which allows you to look up the relevant commodity codes, duty and VAT rates.
Question: Will I need a Certificate of Origin for my goods now that we have left the EU?
Answer: If you needed it before then you will still need it now. Otherwise, it is not needed in most cases.
Question: Can I export EU goods with EU Preference from the United Kingdom?
Answer: No. Once the goods have been cleared in the United Kingdom, they lose their preferential status unless enough work is done in the United Kingdom to make them qualify for preference again.
You can read more questions and answers in our October Issue of Dorset Business Focus magazine (available 1st October). Please click here for the latest digital copy along with past issues.
Come and talk to us...On 7th October our team will be holding a 'pop-up' event where you can come and meet us and talk all things International Trade.
We will be outside Caterpillar Marine then Arena Business Park on the Ferndown Industrial Estate in the morning – keep an eye on the Dorset Chamber Linkedin and Twitter accounts for where and when - and come and grab a free drink and a cookie, and have a chat with us.
We look forward to seeing you.