Supply Chain Enabled

Brexit – 40 days to end of the transition period

Published: November 23, 2020
Author: Lorcan Sheehan

Brexit update – 40 days to end of the transition period

Although the UK left the EU in January 2020, the real impact of that change to supply chains will occur on 1st January 2021.  From this day,  customs controls will be placed on the movement of goods between Great Britain and the EU.

Today, a simple sale of goods between the EU and the UK, requires little more than a phone call to a logistics provider and a ferry booking.  From January 2021, this will require a co-ordinated series of actions:

    •  Submissions of formal declarations
    •  Interaction with multiple systems
    •  Confirmation of approval to proceed between all stakeholders, including exporter, importer, haulier, ferry companies, customs officers and authorities
    • Further changes will be required to shipments involving live animals or animal products, or other controlled goods. These will involve pre-notification and the submission of health certificates, introduced on a phased basis between January and July 2021.
    • There are new requirements for the use of wooden packaging (pallets) and phased changes in product labelling, origin statements, product safety and regulatory requirements

Shipments between EU countries that use the UK Landbridge will need to cross two borders – interacting with customs authorities on both the EU and UK side at each crossing.

Many companies have been preparing for these changes for several years, but as we approach the go-live date, businesses need to extend their level of detail beyond the registration for EORI numbers and the researching of product tariff codes.

Detailed conversations between customers, suppliers and supply chain providers need to take place, in order to map out the future process to confirm readiness.   Outside of any future duties and tariffs, there will be additional administration and compliance costs associated with any changes required. with these changes.

Global supply chains have proven themselves capable of dealing with highly complex customs requirements around the world.   In time, we expect that supply chains will adapt to the new EU / UK requirements.  However, with many of these requirements and systems only becoming available late in the transition process, there is a high potential for disruption in the early months of 2021.

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