Since January 1st 2021, new regulations and procedures apply for the customs duties and taxes involved in importing goods to the UK.
Brexit itself has already been “done” on January 31st 2020 when the United Kingdom officially left the European Union. While a trade agreement is in place in principle, it’s yet to be announced exactly what that entails. Until that is agreed, imports to the UK from the EU will be treated like international imports.
A range of customs and import tax regulations are now in force for many international locations when importing to the UK, so it’s essential to know what these are before you decide to ship your goods.
We have created a list of considerations to get you started on importing your goods. However, we would recommend using a freight forwarding company, such as Barrington Freight, who can take the stress and headache out of your shipment. We have the know-how and expertise to help your shipment sail through like a breeze and know all the hidden pitfalls that mean goods get stuck at the border and cost business, which we will help you avoid.
You need an EORI (Economic Operator Registration and Identification Number). If you don’t have one organised, you might face delays and increased costs when importing goods. For more information on the process of getting an EORI, visit the government advisory page.
You can either hire an agent for your import declarations or do it yourself.
Your agent must be established in the goods country of origin. If you are seeking an agent for your customs documents, we can help. The declaration process varies if the simplified declaration procedure or an EIDR (Entry in Declarant’s Record) authorisation. Parties usually approved by UK’s HMRC to represent importers and produce the Simplified Declaration:
For every import, you will have to pay customs duties and VAT. Based on where the goods come from, the tariff rates can be classified as either preferential or non-preferential. A preferential rate is applicable on goods from a country with a UK trade agreement, and non-preferential tariffs apply for countries without. Please take a look at our handy tool here to help determine duties payable.
You may be required to have a special license or certificate depending on the goods you import, and some may incur an inspection fee. Check if you need a special licence for your goods here.