Business Readiness Bulletin – EU Transition Period

Please see the below information from BEIS regarding the UK transition from the EU.


UK and Japan agree a free trade agreement
The UK has secured a free trade agreement with Japan, which is the UK’s first major trade deal as an independent trading nation and will increase trade with Japan by an estimated £15.2 billion.  UK businesses will benefit from tariff-free trade on 99% of exports to Japan. The deal is also an important step towards joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). The deal will give UK businesses a gateway to the Asia-Pacific region and help to increase the resilience and diversity of our supply chains.  Further details can be found here.

Letters to businesses about new trade arrangements with the EU from 1 January 2021
HMRC have written to businesses about the new trading arrangements when the UK leave the EU single market and customs Union.  You can find a copy of the letter here. An overview of the steps to take is below.

  • Make sure you have a GB EORI number

You should already have an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number. You will need this to complete customs declarations. If you do not yet have one, you can register for free here.

  • Decide how you’re going to make customs declarations

Customs agents, freight forwarders and express operators can help you with declarations and ensure you’re providing the necessary information. Find out more here.

  • See if your imported goods are eligible for staged controls

Most traders with a good compliance record will be able to defer import declarations on most goods for up to 6 months after 1 January 2021. Apply to use simplified declarations for imports here.

  • Decide how you will account for import VAT when you make a customs declaration

From 1 January 2021, businesses will be able to use postponed VAT accounting to account for import VAT on their VAT Return for goods imported from anywhere in the world.

  • Check if Import VAT is due at the border

Import VAT will not be due at the border if goods in a consignment do not exceed £135 in value. The only exceptions will be excise goods and gifts.

  • Check the Controlled goods list to see if you need to complete declarations from January. If your goods are not on the list you can choose to delay import declarations until July 2021

To check if your imported goods are on the Controlled goods list.

  • Check the government’s tariff tables and consider how your trade will be affected

From 1 January 2021, there will be new rates of Customs Duty for imports - called the UK Global Tariff.

  • Sign up for the new Trader Support Service, if you move goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland or bring goods into Northern Ireland from outside the UK

The free Trader Support Service (TSS) will handle the new processes arising under the Northern Ireland Protocol for you from 1 January 2021. To register your interest for using this service here. Further information about movement of goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland will be available soon. Please note TSS is not available for goods moved between Great Britain and the EU.

Trade with the UK from January 2021: prepare your EU business
If you run an EU-based business, you need to check the new rules and prepare for the changes so that you can continue trading with the UK from January 2021. Information is also available in the following languages: Deutsch, Español, Français, Italiano, Polski.

New Guidance
HMRC video guidance for business who are brand new to customs: HMRC have created a series of short videos aimed at helping those businesses brand new to customs:

Export fish to the EU from 1 January 2021
How to export fish for human consumption from 1 January 2021, what documents you may need and customs rules to follow.

Updated Guidance
Marking, labelling and marketing standards from 1 January 2021
Marking, labelling and marketing standards you must follow to import and export food, plant seeds and manufactured goods from 1 January 2021. Updated to include a new section on making products for Great Britain or the EU market:

  • Placing manufactured goods on the market in Great Britain from 1 January 2021
  • Placing manufactured goods on the EU market from 1 January 2021

Passport rules for travel to Europe from 1 January 2021:
Check whether you need to renew your passport before travelling to Europe from 1 January 2021.
Meeting climate change requirements from 1 January 2021

How climate change regulations, emissions trading, eco-design and energy labelling will change from 1 January 2021.
The guidance has been updated to provide information for businesses placing energy-related products which are subject to Eco-design and Energy Labelling regulations on the GB market from 1 January 2021.

List of customs agents and fast parcel operators from 1 January 2021
Find customs agents and fast parcel operators who can help submit customs declarations from 1 January 2021. The list has been updated to include additional customs agents and fast parcel operators.

Apply for grants if your business completes customs declarations
Find out what grants you can apply for to get funding for recruitment, training and IT improvements if your business completes customs declarations. Further information is available here.

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy 

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