The race is on

Customs under a no-deal Brexit

New government papers hit the business community and forecast more red tape, more costs for customs processes and new details on imports and exports in case of a no-deal Brexit. What’s your best move?

Geoff Taylor 24.10.2018

Brexit update
Brexit update
Brexit update

The UK government published a range of technical notices and trader guidance documents from August to October. You can find a good overview of relevant publications here

Latest notices explain how trade between the UK and EU countries might change in case the UK was to leave the EU (and its Single Market and Customs Union) without a deal in March, 2019. And how to prepare for it.   

For those that have been waiting for a signal to kick-off preparations of customs processes, this was it. Not the first, but a clear and loud one. Free trade with the EU and moving goods across UK borders without red tape will be a thing of the past. 

The new government papers make it clear that trade between the UK and EU will involve customs procedures where previously not required.

Impacts for traders across the board: in new and established sectors

In a nutshell, UK businesses engaged in import and export to or from the EU will need to register for a UK Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) and submit import and export customs declarations. 

Traders can do this themselves (self-filing) or work with a customs broker. It's important to note that volumes for both, the number of customs declarations and that of broker engagements are forecast to skyrocket under Brexit developments.

All this results in slower processing times and increased costs for euro transactions – with clear impacts on business revenues. 

The food and drink industry along with other sectors such as automotive, pharmaceuticals, or aerospace and defense, have been warning about the impact of Brexit-related border delays on supply chains for some time now – and a forecast on more expected costs is terrible news for businesses. 

Brexit update
Brexit update

Logical consequence: damage control through transactional savings on customs

It’s high time for businesses now to shape up. This means preparing their trade teams for upcoming customs procedures and upgrading or implementing their relevant customs software. 

Automating customs processes will drive efficiency and compliance, and deliver the desired transactional savings while avoiding collateral damages through border delays and incorrect duty payments. This applies to self-managed Export Filing and Import Filing, for example. 

But it also includes outsourced customs services. Customs Broker Integration is key to success because system-integrated collaboration with brokers is significantly cheaper, faster, and more secure than traditional paper-based processes. 

The good news about this kind of investment is that it won’t be wasted whichever way Brexit will go. That's because implementing customs software mitigates risks from Brexit as much as from other global trade changes – and it drives forward the digitization agenda of businesses at the same time. 

The time to wait has past, contact AEB solution experts to discuss your individual business requirements for digitizing Customs Management.

Not sure where to start? Get the tools you need in AEB's Brexit Tool Kit for UK Traders


About the author
Geoff Taylor
Geoff Taylor joined AEB in April 2017 and serves as General Manager in the UK. His writing provides an added value on global logistics trends that directly impact the company’s finances and business development.

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