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Full EU import controls delayed till end 2023

While the EU introduced full border controls on goods from GB in January 2021, the UK has phased in EU import controls, and the latest import controls due in July 2022, have been deferred for the 4th time. What does it mean for importers?

The government said it would be wrong to impose July’s EU border controls and risk disruption to ports and supply chains, in the midst of the cost of living crisis and that the remaining import controls on EU goods would not be introduced this year – saving British businesses up to £1bn in annual costs.

Opposition politicians said the move was an admission that custom controls would drive up costs while British exporters faced additional costs and delays and that imports into the UK are being favoured over UK exports to the EU, highlighting barriers to trade that have been in place since Brexit deal.

Despite the government’s apparent bid to save them from disruption, British port operators have reacted to the delay angrily, saying they had already spent £100m building border infrastructure to be ready for new post-Brexit checks in July.

The government said it would review how best to implement its remaining checks through risk assessments and using data and technology to smooth the process.

The new plan will be published later this year before coming into force at the end of 2023.

The following controls planned for introduction from July 2022 and will not now be introduced:
•   Safety and security declarations on EU imports
•   Health certification and SPS checks for EU imports
•   Prohibitions and restrictions on the import of chilled meats from the EU
•   Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) checks on EU imports currently at destination to be moved to Border Control Post (BCP)

Controls introduced last year on the highest risk imports of animals, animal products, plants and plant products will continue to apply.

Current import controls on EU goods will stay in place:
•   Import Customs Declaration
•   GVMS declaration
•   Pre-notification into IPAFFS for POAP, Live animals, Plant Products

If you would like to simplify customs processing for imports from the EU, or learn how we simplify customs compliance for businesses of all sizes, please EMAIL our customs guru, Michelle, directly and she will take you through your best options.