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Brexit and the effect on the transport sector
12 January 2021

The United Kingdom has not been part of the European Union since January 1, but how does this affect imports and exports to and from the UK?

On December 24, 2020, a trade agreement was reached between the EU and the UK. As an official European ‘third country’, the UK is now also no longer part of the EU Customs Union. This means that there are more requirements for importing and exporting goods from / to the UK.

Customs declaration
Now that the Brexit rules are in place, making a customs declaration is required when transporting from or to the UK. For the Netherlands, the declaration must be pre-notified in Portbase and for Belgium in C-point. As a new importer or exporter, you will need an EORI number from Customs, which you can apply for from the Tax and Customs Administration. You will also need to have your EORI number if we draw up the import or export declaration for you.

Other formalities that apply to non-members of the EU also apply to the UK. For example, import and export licenses may be required for specific goods.

VAT
With Brexit also brings change for exporting goods from the UK to the EU for the calculation of VAT. Where previously VAT was reverse-charged in accordance with the rules of intra-Community supplies and services, the UK now falls under the VAT rules for third countries and is taxed at 0% VAT. Exports from the EU can be reverse-charged to the consignee from both the EU and the UK and can be evidenced by proof of exit (customs procedure) or using books and records. When importing from the UK, VAT is levied on the CIF value of the goods on the import declaration, this can be shifted if the importer is in possession of the Art 23 OB licence.

No import duties
The Brexit agreement between the UK and the EU is a free trade agreement, which means that no import tariffs will be taxed. For goods that meet the origin conditions of the agreement, the preferential rate of 0 percent applies. The rules of origin in the agreement are set on the basis of bilateral cumulation. This means that materials from both the EU and the UK may be counted towards achieving the necessary thresholds for tariff and quota-free market access. To claim the reduced (0 percent) tariffs, a certificate of origin prepared by the exporter is required, showing that the product is of preferential origin. This attestation must meet certain conditions which we will be happy to advise you on if required.

Agreements to reduce customs checks where possible
The Brexit treaty states that if parties meet certain requirements, they can be granted Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) status. This means that they can use a simplified customs procedure when it comes to controls for security. It is also hereby agreed that the EU and the UK recognize each other’s AEO licenses.

Jordex is in possession of the AEO license since 2011, both for Customs and for Safety.

Import or export of animal or vegetable origin
When importing goods of animal or plant origin from the UK, they must meet the requirements of the EU, namely the “sanitary and phytosanitary requirements”. Conversely, these products must meet the UK’s requirements when exported to the UK. This means that export certification and import controls must be taken into account.

Should you have questions about the changes Brexit will bring to the transport sector, please have no hesitation in getting in touch with our Customs Specialist: Dennis den Rooijen.