Simplified importing procedures not enough, say hauliers

Simplified importing procedures not enough, say hauliers

The Government’s announcement about simplified customs checks is not enough to prepare businesses for a no-deal Brexit, hauliers have claimed.
 
HMRC has written a letter to 145,000 businesses trading with the EU about simplified importing procedures for customs - Transitional Simplified Procedures (TSP) – in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
 
The Government said once registered for TSP, importers will be able to transport goods from the EU into the UK without having to make a full customs declaration at the border, and will be able to postpone paying any import duties.
 
HMRC anticipates TSP will remain in place for more than a year to give businesses time to prepare to use the full customs processes that already apply to imports from non-EU countries. 
 
RHA Chief Executive Richard Burnett said: “On face value, this appears to be a positive step, but we reinforce our concerns that the sheer scale of the issue means that there is simply not enough time for businesses to get ready to leave the EU. 
 
“This is just one part of the Brexit jigsaw. The French have still not defined their export process. How on earth can businesses make the necessary arrangements and plan for the future when then are still in the dark as to how the processes on both sides of the Channel will work? 
 
“Despite our constant and incessant calls for clarity, none has been forthcoming and through no fault of its own the haulage and logistics industry is still not ready for a no-deal, no transition Brexit in less than seven weeks’ time.”
 
Treasury Minister, Mel Stride MP, the Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said: “Leaving the EU with a deal remains the government’s top priority. This has not changed. However, a responsible government must plan for every eventuality, including a no deal scenario. Businesses and citizens should ensure they are similarly prepared for leaving the EU.
 
HMRC has urged businesses to obtain an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number which it said will be “crucial” to be able to trade after Brexit (including without a deal). 
 
More information is available here