HM Revenue & Customs has just published an updated version of the Partnership Pack on GOV.UK to help businesses plan for the possibility of a ‘no deal’ EU Exit. Businesses that currently only trade with the EU who will have to carry out a number of processes that they have not had to before. This builds on the previous version of the pack, published in October, and includes additional information about trade at the border from departments across government. The pack focuses on how VAT, Customs and Excise could be affected and includes information split by topic and audience, and also includes flowcharts.
Deal or No Deal?
The guides produced by HM Revenue & Customs include:
Guide 1 – Get a UK EORI number to trade within the EU
Guide 2 – Exporting and importing goods if the UK leaves the EU with no deal
Guide 3 – Declaring your goods at customs if the UK leaves the EU with no deal
Guide 4 – Customs procedures if the UK leaves the EU with no deal
Guide 5 – Moving goods to and from the EU through roll on roll off locations including Eurotunnel.
We’ve put a quick summary of actions below, but you can find and download the guides here.
1. For importers on a no deal Brexit scenario
No action required yet, but if no agreement is reached, you’ll need an EORI number to import. You might also need to pay VAT or duty.
2. For exporters on a no deal Brexit scenario
No action required yet, but if no agreement is reached, you’ll need an EORI number to export, as well as potentially an export license. Check up on commodity codes for your goods to be able to fill out export declarations too.
EU customers will need to register for an EU EORI number too.
3. UK passport holders travelling to the EU on a no deal Brexit scenario
If travelling within the Schengen area, your passport will need to be valid for at least 6 months, so be sure there’s enough time on your passport.
4. Any traders importing from the EU to the UK on a no deal Brexit scenario
Traders would need to follow worldwide customs rules, which means, making import declarations, paying customs duties required under a new UK Trade Tariff (and this would replace the EU Common Customs Tariff).
You’ll also need to have a UK EORI number, and be sure that you abide by Incoterms conditions. It’s advisable to consult a freight forwarder or customs agent in any case, to avoid complications.
5. Any traders shipping to the EU from the UK on a no deal Brexit scenario
Traders from the UK would be expected to follow rules as if they were exporting to the EU from any other country outside of the EU. It’s important to ensure you’re registered with an EORI number before the 29th March, be aware of export declarations and understand Incoterms to reflect that you’re exporting to the EU.
6. Traders exporting to the rest of the world on a no deal Brexit scenario
No changes in the case of a no deal Brexit
7. Businesses providing services to the EU on a no deal Brexit scenario
VAT supply rules will remain the same from an accounting process. However, if the UK leaves the EU with no agreement, the UK won’t be part of EU-wide VAT IT systems. This includes the following services:
- UK VAT Mini One Stop Shop (MOSS)
- EU VAT refund system
- EU VAT registration number validation
8. Intellectual Property and exhaustion of IP on a no deal Brexit scenario
No change here – the UK will continue to recognise the EEA regional exhaustion regime to provide relief and continuity to any losses from businesses
9. Express couriers and post on a no deal Brexit scenario
Customs processes and controls that currently apply to countries outside of the UK will apply to the EU, so any express courier services will not apply EU customs rules if there is a no deal Brexit.
VAT will be payable for all trade between the EU and UK – this means that Low Value Consignment Relief (LVCR) – for goods under £15 will no longer apply and be taxable
10. Haulage companies working between the UK and the EU on a no deal Brexit scenario
Haulage companies will need to file security and safety declarations and confirm all customs declarations are in place and up to date.
11. Freight forwarders on a no deal Brexit scenario
As with importers and exporters, freight forwarding companies will need to have a European Economic Operator Registration and Identification number (EU EORI) in addition to their existing UK EORI number.
For roll-on roll-off (Ro-Ro) transport, you’ll need to collect information from the drivers and traders and notify HMRC of any necessary consignments ahead of them arriving.
12. Customs agents on a no deal Brexit scenario
In a no deal Brexit scenario, customs services for traders operating between the UK and just the EU is likely to increase.
The key customs process that will change is the requirement to have an EU EORI number as well as a UK EORI number.
Collecting consignee information for Ro-Ro transport for HMRC will also be required.
13. Ports and airports on a no deal Brexit scenario
Systems, processes and controls will need to change to adapt EU trade to that of other worldwide trade (also known as third country trade and procedures).
This might require a considerably manual process, particularly for ports and airports that mainly focus on EU trade. It’s therefore important to understand the key processing requirements of third country trade and what this means for your port or airport. As mentioned earlier, passporting rules will also likely change.
14. Customs warehouses on a no deal Brexit scenario
As the status of EU goods changes, so will customs controls. Customs warehouses should treat foods as though they are treated from the rest of the world.
This could require additional staff training, an analysis of warehouse space and awareness of customs warehousing procedures for the rest of the world.