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EU Exit – Update from HMRC

This week HMRC published a letter to 145,000 UK businesses who currently trade goods with non-EU countries. The letter outline important changes to customs procedures and VAT for UK-EU trade that will occur if the UK leaves the EU without a deal, which is looking more and more likely. These changes will also have an impact on UK trade outside of the EU.

The letter includes the actions these businesses must take now to make sure they are able to trade as smoothly as possible when the UK leaves, such as registering for an international trader number, known as an EORI number, which these businesses will need to continue trading with the EU.

What You Need To Know

EORI Numbers

  1. Any business that already trades with non-EU countries and has a UK EORI number will continue to be able to use this for UK-EU trade and does not need to apply again.
  2. If a business has an EU EORI number, it can use this for a temporary period, after which the HMRC will advise on when to make the switch to a UK EORI number.
  3. EU EORI numbers will begin with different country prefixes, such as ‘IE’ or ‘FR’.

Importing into the UK from the EU

  1. In order to simplify the importation of goods into the UK, HMRC introduced the Transitional Simplified Procedures (TSP) for a business established in the UK.
  2. To take advantage of the TSP, the client must sign up for TSP, after which it will be able to import goods into the UK from the EU without making a full customs declaration at the border, and thus will be able to postpone paying any import duties.
  3. Registration for the TSP is done online. In order to register for the TSP, the client must have an EORI number.

UK VAT Refund for EU Business

  1. Although the point made about UK refunds for EU businesses isn’t available in the VAT Notice 732A, it seems that HMRC is yet to load this onto the website. In a manner of speaking this is the first clear confirmation from HMRC that EU businesses can claim a refund of UK VAT.
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