Hello again, it’s Stephen the Customs Clearance Manager for Hellmann Worldwide Logistics in the UK.
As we draw ever closer to yet another deadline day I thought it would be a good idea to remind everyone to consider again the complexity of post-Brexit EU trade shipments. In particular the number of different commodity codes and countries of origin that will need to be shown on the import and export declarations to HMRC. This believe it or not will have a large bearing on the price you will be paying to a ‘customs broker’ and will, therefore, have a knock-on effect on the cost of your products. However, this is something that if confronted in advance and discussions entered into with ourselves or your nominated broker can be made drastically simpler and less time consuming, therefore, reducing costs. There are various ways of doing this, for example, supplying the broker with documents via EDI in the form XML spreadsheets/pivot tables etc. thus cutting out the need to supply copies of invoices. This may take some time to set up between the two parties but the benefits, in the long run, will be immense in some cases. In summary, contact your broker/carrier at your earliest convenience to avoid the inevitable rush come October.
As my colleague, David has mentioned TSP (transitional simplified procedures) previously; I thought another quick word on the matter may not go amiss.
Although the idea of TSP would primarily provide a simple short term easement measure for the first part of a no-deal, the reality is that it simply won’t work in practical day to day operations, mainly due to the reasons set out below.
The current assumption is that transit from the EU will have to be in the form of a T1 transit document leaving the question of how and when this document is discharged.
Present regulations give only two places where this can happen, an [air]port or at the premises of an ‘Authorised Consignee’.
If at the latter, this means cargo must be unloaded and counted at the authorised premises before clearance can happen; then reloaded and delivered. This method would add considerable cost and delay, as well as the potential for handling mistakes; also it might be that the location of such premises is not geographically suited to the final delivery point.
If at the former, discharge of the T1 document at a [air] port, means the truck must stop at the port anyway irrespective of the existence of a TSP approval. If stopping to discharge the T1 at the port the clearance may as well be done at the same time. No need to unload and count cargo before clearance at a port can be granted.
After port clearance is granted, cargo may proceed directly to the delivery point for unloading.
We have raised this point more than once with the relevant government departments but as yet we have no definitive answer… We will keep you all posted should we get some firm news on this matter.