Throughout 2021, you have been allowed to export goods to the EU using tariff preference and get supplier declarations afterwards, to give you more time. But from 1 January 2022 you must have supplier declarations (where required) at the time you export your goods. You will no longer be able to delay making import customs declarations under the Staged Customs Controls rules that have applied during 2021. Most customers will have to make declarations and pay relevant tariffs at the point of import.
You should consider now how you are going to submit your customs declarations and pay any duties that are due. You can appoint an intermediary, such as a customs agent, to deal with your declarations on your behalf or you can submit them yourself. It is important to act now to ensure business continuity and in this blog we examine the changes in the import and export origin of goods.
Rules of origin – for imports and exports
The UK’s deal with the EU, called the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA), means that the goods you import or export may benefit from a reduced rate of Customs Duty (tariff preference). To use this, you need proof that the goods you:
- import from the EU that they originate there
- export to the EU that they originate in the UK
By ‘originate’ we mean where goods (or the materials, parts or ingredients used to make them) have been produced or manufactured. It is not where the goods have been shipped or bought from. Your goods will need to meet the product specific rules of origin requirements set out in the TCA.
UK and EU importers can claim tariff preference if they have one of the following proofs of origin:
- a statement on origin – this must be made out by the exporter to confirm that the product originates in the UK or EU
- the importer’s knowledge – this option allows the importer to claim tariff preference based on their own knowledge of where the goods they’re importing originate from
If you export goods to the EU and you provide the EU importer with a statement on origin, you may also need to have a supplier declaration in place. These are needed to confirm the origin of the goods you’re exporting when the manufacture alone is not enough to meet the product-specific rules of origin.
If you cannot provide a supplier declaration to confirm the UK origin of goods you exported to the EU between 1 January and 31 December 2021, you must let your customer know.
If you’re subject to a request for verification by EU customs authorities and you can’t provide this supporting evidence, your EU customer will be liable to pay the full (non-preferential) rate of Customs Duty and you may get a penalty charge.
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