Despite extension and election Brexit threats remain

This week’s Brexit extension and vote for general election effectively means that a No-Deal exit before the new 31st January 2020 deadline should be extremely unlikely. But threats for shippers remain.

It is likely that the general election will see the Brexit Party threaten to take seats away from the Tories, which means a pre or post election alliance could result in a far more right leaning/hard Brexit majority – which would significantly increase the likelihood of a No-Deal Brexit before the new 31st January 2020 deadline.

This uncertainty should not be ignored, which is why we urge customers to continue with the contingency planning that will make their supply chain Brexit-proof.

1. If you didn’t already hold one and you trade with the EU, you should have had an EORI allocated by HMRC.

2. If you trade with the EU you should also have received HMRC notification of enrolment in Transitional Simplified Procedures (TSP), which has been designed to streamline UK imports, to avoid delays at Ro/Ro ports. You will need a Customs Deferment Account to pay any import duty and HMRC will expect you to maintain records of your imports. You will need to submit a TSP return by the 4th working day of the following month, with the first declaration suspended for six months.

3. For smaller volume shippers, with an EORI number, it will probably be easier for us to make standard customs declarations on your behalf, using our deferment facility, if required.

4. The post-Brexit tariff has 87% of products zero-rated (at least for 12 months). It is critical that you correctly identify your commodity codes and cross-reference these to your products, to get the applicable duty rate. Speak to us if you are uncertain, because if you get it wrong, you may pay too much, or face the possibility of penalties.

5. Exports from UK to EU must be on ISPM15 heat treated pallets, bearing the IPPC stamp. Contact us if you require us to supply ISPM15 pallets.

6. If you are exporting your customer will need to arrange an import in his country, unless you are supplying on a DDP basis, in which case you may need VAT and EORI registration in the destination country, as you have to arrange everything. You should consider changing terms to DAP. (Note the same impact on imports.)

7. Supplying on ExWorks means that the buyer is responsible for raising the export declaration in the seller’s country, in addition to the import entry, duty and VAT in their country. You should consider changing terms to FCA.