What is changed about trading
Traders who were engaged solely in trade to and from the United Kingdom, by providing only the proof of Union status of goods, as from the 1st of January 2021 have to carry out transactions requiring customs formalities, i.e., submit an import or export customs declaration, as these transactions will be treated as transactions from or to a third country.
Since goods are now considered as originated from a third country, the provisions for proof of Union status of the goods no longer apply.
Therefore, traders who were not involved in trade with third countries but only in intra-Union transactions are required to register with customs authorities in the Member State where they are established, in order to be assigned with an EORI number, in order to be able to submit import or export declarations.
Import/export of goods from/to the United Kingdom from 1st of January 2021 and thereafter.
a) Import duties
The EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement provides for zero tariffs and zero quotas on all goods originating in and traded between the EU and the UK, from 1 January 2021. The zero tariff and zero quota provisions apply to all goods that comply with the appropriate rules of origin.
In order to grant the tariff preference, proof of origin must be presented, i.e., either a "statement on origin" drawn up by the exporter or "importer's knowledge" that the product is originating (i.e., meets the rules of origin).
Goods that are not considered as originating in UK will be subject to the general duty rate applicable to any third country in accordance with the Common External Tariff of the European Union.
b) Value Added Tax (VAT)
As from the 1st of January 2021, imports of goods from UK to an EU Member State are subject to VAT, at the rate that applies to the same goods in that Member State, i.e., VAT will be payable to customs authorities at the time of importation.
c) Excise duties
As from the 1st of January 2021, excisable goods imported into the EU from UK are subject to excise duties in the EU. Entry of excise goods into the EU from UK will be treated as an import.
a) Entry and exit summary declarations
For protection and security purposes, all goods transported to and from the UK from the date of departure will be covered by summary entry and exit declarations respectively.
Therefore, all goods arriving from the UK or departing for the UK and being transported either by air or by sea should be subject to summary entry and / or exit summary declarations, as appropriate before arrival or the departure of the means of transport.
Entry and / or exit summary declarations are submitted to customs authorities by carriers (e.g., airlines / shipping agents) or their authorized representatives.
b) Import / export declarations - Customs controls
The submission of import declarations as well as the presentation of the necessary customs documents (invoice, packing list, bill of lading, licenses, etc.) is required. The same applies to exported goods for which an export declaration is required.
The goods are subject to customs controls for the verification of the declarations, e.g., customs value, tariff classification, validity of documents, etc. In addition, the goods are subject to compliance checks for safety, health and environmental purposes.
c) Entry into special customs procedures
As from the 1st of January 2021, goods originating in the UK will be considered as non-EU goods. Therefore, they may be subject to a special procedure depending on the case, i.e., transit or storage or temporary admission or specific use or inward processing.
The entry of goods under special customs procedures requires an authorization by the customs authorities. In addition, due to the suspension of the payment of customs duties, the provision of a guarantee is required, which will cover any customs debts.
EORI - Economic Operators Registration and Identification
The submission of customs declarations requires the registration in the customs registry and the identification of the economic operators with the issuance of EORI number.
The EORI number is a unique number, issued by the customs authorities of a Member State, to economic operators or other persons for customs purposes, valid in all Member States.
EORI number should be obtained by economic operators who were conducting exclusively intra-EU trade and have not participated in trade with third countries and may not have been assigned an EORI number.
UK economic operators with a UK EORI number should note that from the date of departure, the UK EORI number will not be valid. Therefore, in order to be able to operate in the 27 Member States, they will have to register in one Member State and obtain a new EORI number.
More information on the procedure for issuing the EORI number can be found on the website of the Customs Department by selecting the following link.
Customs authorizations and Customs Decisions
Authorized Economic Operators (AEOs) and single authorizations (central customs authorizations) for customs procedures issued by the UK customs authorities are no longer be valid in the EU. Respectively, authorizations issued by Member State authorities ceased to be valid in the UK.
Customs decisions, such as binding tariff information (BTI) issued by the UK customs authorities, no longer apply in the EU.
As from the 1st of January 2021, passengers arriving from the UK in the Republic of Cyprus are treated as passengers from a third country.
Click here to see relevant documents.