UK Parliament

Charges for new import controls on 30th April, 2024

23rd April, 2024

From 30th April, 2024, new post-Brexit regulations will be introduced for sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) imports into Great Britain (GB). These new regulations will affect the places where checks take place. They also affect the documentation the trader must have ready for the consignment, as well as the type of checks the consignments will be undergoing. Please refer to our March article for more details: Are you ready for the new Import Controls on 30th April, 2024?

Introduction of the post-Brexit Common User Charge

One aspect that traders might be unfamiliar with is the charges that will apply to eligible imports coming into GB. The so-called Common User Charge will apply to imports of animal products, plants and plant products entering GB through the Port of Dover or Eurotunnel which are eligible for sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) checks at a government-run Border Control Post. 

The UK government applied these charges to fund the government-run Border Control Posts at the Port of Dover and Eurotunnel.

How it works in practice

The Common User Charge will apply to common health entry document (CHED) notifications on the import of products, animals, food and feed system (IPAFFS) that are submitted or changed on or after 30th April, 2024.

It will apply to each commodity line in a CHED with a maximum of 5 commodity lines, even if there are more than 5 commodity lines present in the CHED. Medium and high-risk CHEDs will be capped at £145. Low-risk products of animal origin (POAO) CHEDs and POAO transits will be capped at £50.

If a CHED has commodity lines with different risk categories, the rate of the highest risk category will apply to all commodity lines.

The Common User Charge rates for live animals will be published in a later stage. 

It is important to note that the Common User Charge will be applied to all eligible imports, irrespective of whether the import is selected for a physical check at planned government-run Border Control Post facilities. 

Further details can be found on the GOV.UK website here.

What can you do to prepare for these new post-Brexit import controls?

Traders should be aware and understand that their operating costs will increase if a Common User Charge applies to their imports. This Common User Charge is in addition to the inspection fees from the Port Health Authority (for products of animal origin) and/or the Animal and Plant Health Agency (for plant and plant products) that also apply upon entering GB.

Commercial (private) ports are to set their own charging structure and rates for traders using their services.

Additional charges will apply in situations of late payment or payment avoidance of the Common User Charge. 

The first digital invoices will be issued later in the year for charges incurred from Apri 30th, 2024. Thereafter, invoices will be issued monthly. 
If you have any questions about the Common User Charge or any other aspect of importing into GB from 30th April, 2024, please get in touch with us today.

Are you ready for the new Import Controls on April 30th, 2024?

To meet your compliance obligations and minimise disruption, make sure your business is prepared for the new import controls. Taking effect on April 30th, 2024, these regulations will introduce new requirements for imports into Great Britain (GB). If you have any concerns or queries, please contact us.

In the meantime, let’s look at these changes in detail:

Entry through Designated Border Control Points

From April 30th, 2024, traders must ensure goods from the EU/EFTA enter GB through appropriately designated Border Control Posts (BCPS) or Control Points (CPs) to specify their commodity type. Risk-based documentary, identity and physical checks will take place here.

High-risk plants and plant products from the EU, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein  

Inspections for these will change from Places of Destination (PoDs) to BCPs and CPs. When called upon, you must present consignments for inspection here.

Fishery Products documentation

If you import fish or fishery products for human consumption, you must upload IUU (Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated) documents to the CHED import notification in IPAFFs before submission.         

Imports from non EU-EFTA risk-assessed countries will align with the Border Target Operating Model (BTOM)

Imports will be simplified, and health certification for low-risk animal products will be removed.

  • There will be reduced physical and identity checks on medium-risk animal products.             
  • Check rates will be adjusted, and import control requirements for some low-risk plants and some low-risk plant products will be removed.
  • High- and medium-risk plants will be subject to proportionate levels of checks at Border Control Posts (BCPs) or Control Points (CPs) upon entry into GB. 
  • The requirement of a Phytosanitary Certificate (PC) and CHED import notifications made on IPAFFS will remain.

If you are unsure about any of the above, please contact us for guidance

Or find out more about non-EU/EFTA BTOM risk categories for Animal Products or non-EU/EFTA BTOM risk categories for Plant Products.

How to submit your import notifications and customs declarations:

Submit import notifications through Defra’s Import of Products, Animals, Food, and Feed System (IPAFFS).

Submit customs declarations via HMRC’s CDS (Customs Declaration Service).    

You must ensure there is alignment between these systems

Otherwise you may encounter a ‘No Match’ error, which could divert your consignments to Border Control Posts. 

  • Background processes validate the import notification reference, commodity code(s) and net weight(s) of consignments.
  • These processes provide the SPS inspection decisions for the import notification to CDS.
  • All cross-checking import notifications and customs declarations for consignments from EU/EFTA countries will be enforced from April 30th, 2024.

Here’s what you must do from April 30th, 2024:

  1. Submit the import notification before the customs declaration.
  2. Address any inconsistencies promptly to prevent “No Match” errors.
  3. If any inconsistency is found and there is an error message on CDS and the IPAFFS dashboard, correct the errors in both systems as quickly as possible. You must do this before the consignment reaches the port of departure to avoid the consignment being directed to a BCP.

We know this will be a challenging transition for many businesses

Fortunately, our team at Cutraco can help you proactively prepare for this change to prevent any disruption to your business. In fact, we are currently supporting companies and processing customs declarations for products that are covered by the new regulations. 

If you have any questions or concerns about these new import controls, please contact us today.

The UK and the EU

Risk categorisation for CHED-D products

The amendments regarding risk categorisation for CHED-D products (Common Health Entry Documents for high-risk food not of animal origin – i.e. the retained EU Regulation 2019/1793) have recently been published and will come into force on the 7th March 2024.

The current list of high-risk food and feed of non-animal origin (HRFNAO) will be amended from 7th March 2024.

Some background information can be found here

Why were these changes introduced?

The regulation has been amended to reflect the changes to hazards affecting imported food to ensure the safety of consumers.

To view the latest changes please click here.

Below is an overview of (new) products that have now been categorised as medium and / or high-risk products. For these products, importers will need to submit CHED-Ds (and any other required documentation such as health certificates) when bringing them into Great Britain if they have an arrival date in the UK of 7th March 2024 or after:

  • Enoki mushrooms from China
  • Granadilla (Passiflora ligularis) and passion fruit from Colombia
  • Bananas from Ecuador
  • Oranges from Egypt
  • Vine leaves from Egypt
  • Peppers from India for pesticides
  • Cinnamon and cinnamon-tree flowers from India
  • Cloves (whole fruit, cloves and stems) from India
  • Drumsticks (Moringa oleifera) from India
  • Ginger, saffron, turmeric (Curcuma), thyme, bay leaves, curry and other spices from India
  • Nutmeg, mace and cardamons from India
  • Seeds of anise, badian, fennel, coriander, cumin or caraway, and juniper berries from India
  • Rice from India
  • Melon seeds from Iran
  • Hot peppers (Capsicum spp.) from Kenya
  • Cow peas (Vigna unguiculata subspp.) from Madagascar
  • Rice from Pakistan
  • Enoki mushrooms from South Korea
  • Sesame seeds (Sesamum) from Syria
  • Tahini and halva from Sesamum seeds from Syria

Which products have been removed from the list or moved to a lower risk profile?

From 7 March 2024 – Hazelnuts from Turkey have been removed from the list and therefore no longer require CHED-Ds and / or health checks upon entry into the UK.

Furthermore, Pitahaya (dragon fruit) from Vietnam has been moved to a lower risk profile. Although CHED-Ds are still required to be submitted, shipments departing from Vietnam from 7 March 2024 onward will no longer require health certificates or test reports.

Which products have been moved to a higher risk profile?

In contrast, Spice mixes from Pakistan have been moved to a higher risk profile. CHED-Ds were already required to be submitted, but shipments departing from Pakistan from 7 March 2024 onward will now also require original health certificates and copies of test results to be submitted to port health along with CHED-Ds.

Finally, it has been announced that the scope of controls for groundnuts has been extended to include groundnut paste from certain countries.

How you can prepare for these changes:

Review your product portfolios

Ensure that the CHED-D and any other required documentation is obtained and available.

Update the details on the Master Data tab in the import declaration template.

Please let us know if you need our support to review the current master data table and / or update the master data table for these changes per 7 March 2024.

You can also contact us if you have any questions and / or would like a call to discuss this in more detail.

HMRC headquarters, Whitehall.

Import VAT – Are C79 certificates correct to qualify as evidence for the payment of import VAT?

20 November 2023

Traders that import products into the UK need to consider and account for import VAT. 

To facilitate traders and to avoid unnecessary cash flow costs, HMRC introduced the Postponed VAT Accounting System, also referred to as PVA, which is available to all traders. With PVA, import VAT is not payable upon the importation of the products, but it can be accounted for in the VAT return. 

Although PVA is available for all traders and commonly used, some clearing agents and traders continue paying the import VAT upon importation, leading to unnecessary costs for the traders. In either event, the importer needs to report the import VAT details in its VAT return and consider recovery of the import VAT and input VAT.

How do you prove that you’ve paid import VAT?

The trader needs to hold evidence of the VAT that is paid on imported goods before the import VAT can be recovered as input VAT. It has been HMRC’s policy that the (only) evidence of payment of the import VAT can be a copy of the PVA statement and / or a copy of the C79 certificate, the latter in the event that PVA is not applied. 

Customs Declaration Service (CDS) data 

HMRC holds records of actual data entered on customs declarations, which includes data for the calculation of the customs duties as well as the import VAT. HMRC uses the CDS data to perform audits of the correctness of the customs declaration and respective duty calculation.  

HMRC provides the CDS data to traders as a service, allowing traders to hold the same data as HMRC in relation to the customs declarations and key details for the customs duty calculation and import VAT values. HMRC encourages traders to obtain such CDS data to improve the accuracy of their records.


We noticed a discrepancy of the import VAT position between the C79 certificates that HMRC issues and the CDS data that is available.

It appears that the C79 certificates reflect the import VAT details upon initial acceptance of the customs declaration, whilst the CDS data reflect the import VAT details upon arrival and clearance into the UK. This leads to confusion as to what the appropriate source is for completing the import VAT details in the VAT returns and could also lead to discussions with HMRC during a VAT audit.

Whilst the import VAT is payable (and thus recoverable) upon arrival and clearance into the UK, the C79 certificates appear to reflect the import VAT position at the moment of the initial acceptance of a customs declaration. Where customs declarations are pre-lodged (e.g. consignments arrive in Dover via the Eurotunnel), it is possible that the initial acceptance of a customs declaration lies days or even weeks before the arrival and clearance of the shipment into the UK. It is even possible that a declaration is cancelled afterwards or that a shipment never arrives in the UK. The import VAT position on the C79 certificates therefore appears to be incorrect. 

Current position and next steps 

A UK VAT return should reflect the actual and correct position for VAT and the recovery of import VAT. Traders are penalised for submitting incorrect VAT returns. 

Import VAT is payable (and thus recoverable) upon arrival and clearance into the UK. It should therefore be reported in the VAT return that covers the date of the arrival and clearance of the goods into the UK. The C79 certificates that are currently issued appear to reflect the date of initial acceptance of a customs declaration, resulting in incorrect dates of import VAT where customs declarations are pre-lodged. 

It is HMRC’s responsibility to ensure that documentation is issued as evidence for the VAT that is paid on imported goods. However, it must be acknowledged that the C79 certificates and creation thereof from customs declaration data dates back to a period before the possibility of pre-lodged customs. Nevertheless, HMRC cannot hold traders responsible for recovering import VAT in an incorrect period resulting in the above mentioned discrepancy in the available data that is made available by HMRC.

Traders should be able to rely on the C79 certificates as issued by HMRC. However, we view that – where available – traders should be allowed to use CDS data which reflects the actual data entered on customs declarations instead. In particular as the details that are reflected on the C79 certificates appear to be incorrect for customs declarations that are pre-lodged. 

We trust that HMRC will address the identified issue in the C79 certificates and resolve the matter to ensure that the C79 certificates will reflect the import VAT details correctly (i.e. as per the moment of the arrival and clearance into the UK). In the meantime, we hope that HMRC will acknowledge the mentioned discrepancy in the data for the import VAT position that is available from HMRC and address this internally and externally. 

Customs and Trade Consultancy Limited aims to improve the customs and VAT standard for traders, and welcomes a dialogue with HMRC on this topic. 

What you can do

Traders should be aware of and understand the transactions that are recorded in their UK VAT returns, which include the import VAT position. In this respect, we concur with HMRC’s position that CDS data can improve the quality of the records for customs and import VAT, and we encourage the use of HMRC’s CDS data service. 

Customs and Trade Consultancy can support you in obtaining HMRC CDS data, interpreting the data to improve the quality of the customs and import VAT records, and learning how to effectively utilise the CDS data to further improve the customs and VAT compliance. 

If you have any questions about evidence for import VAT, your UK VAT return or utilising CDS data, please get in touch with us today

The UK and the EU

Updates to the BTOM risk categorisation for EU animal products

14 November 2023

On 29 August 2023, the UK government published the final version of the post-Brexit Border Target Operating Model (BTOM), which sets out the government’s model for importing goods into the UK from countries inside and outside the EU.      

Risk categorisation under the BTOM    

The BTOM categorises live animals, germinal products, products of animal origin and animal by-products in high-risk, medium-risk, or low-risk categories. Each category will have a proportionate level of control at the UK borders. For example, low-risk goods require provision of a pre-notification and commercial documentation, but medium- and high-risk goods require an additional health certification and may be selected for routine physical border checks respectively.

When did this change take effect?

Risk categories for imports of live animals, germinal and animal products from non-EU countries were published in August 2023.

The UK government has now updated the risk categorisation of EU animal products under the BTOM. The existing risk categorisation has been expanded to include additional commodity codes, and errors pertaining to fish oil and apiculture products as animal by-products have been corrected.

The risk categorisation is available in a table format which also includes a look-up tool (see link) designed to find a risk category by CN code. This would help traders to find the BTOM risk category for their goods. 

Caveats of the BTOM

Trades need to be aware that a commodity from one country could be in the low-risk category but the same commodity from a different country could be in the medium-risk category. Furthermore, the guidance does not include all import requirements for all Sanitary Phyto-Sanitary commodity codes. 

Ultimately, traders remain responsible for categorising their goods correctly into low-, medium- or high-risk goods and identify which (additional) requirements apply for their entry into the UK. They need to educate themselves of any import-related requirements and restrictions when importing their goods into the UK. 

Make sure your business is prepared for BTOM requirements and other post-Brexit changes

If you think your business might be impacted by the Border Target Operating Model or other post-Brexit developments, get in touch with us today

We can also help you with other customs and international trade-related matters, as well as operational support with the lodging of UK import and export declarations.

The Houses of Parliament, London, on a sunny August morning

COI requirements for organic products 

13 September 2023

On 29 August 2023, the UK government published the final version of the post-Brexit Border Target Operating Model, which sets out the government’s model for importing goods into the UK from countries inside and outside the EU.      

What is the Border Target Operating Model?    

This applies to imports of live animals, germinal products, animal products, plants and plant products from all countries into Great Britain, and describes the implementation of new security and biosecurity controls on imports from the EU.

The main limitation of the Border Target Operating Model

Unfortunately, it does not provide any detail with regard to the requirements for the entry and importation of organic products into the UK.

What are the current rules for importing organic goods?    

Currently, organic products that the UK exports to the EU must be accompanied by a so-called Certificate of Inspection (COI), a document certifying that shipped goods have been inspected and that they conform with the terms stated on the sales contract. In contrast, organic products that are imported from the EU, European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland into the UK do not yet require such a COI.

The deadline for COIs has been pushed back to 2025

According to the newly published Border Target Operating Model, imports of organic products into GB from the EU, EEA and Switzerland would have required COIs from 31 December 2023.

However, DEFRA announced on 1 September 2023 that this timeline is incorrect and that the requirement for COIs for organic products from the EU, EEA and Switzerland has, again, been delayed until 1 February 2025.

Why has the deadline for COIs been delayed?

The grace period until 1 February 2025 allows businesses to continue importing and trading organic products coming from the EU, EEA and Switzerland without requiring a COI. Products must still adhere to Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) requirements and other rules under the post-Brexit EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement.

It’s important to note that imports into GB from all other countries already require a GB paper-based COI. The COI template has recently been updated and has been required for all imports into the UK (except from the EU, EEA and Switzerland) since 1 September 2023.

Make sure your business is prepared for COI requirements and other post-Brexit changes

If you think your business might be impacted by the Border Target Operating Model or other post-Brexit developments, get in touch with us today.

We can also help you with other customs and international trade related matters, as well as operational support with the lodging of UK import and export declarations.


The Border Target Operating Model

5 April 2023

The UK government has published the draft version of the Border Target Operating Model, which sets out the government’s model for importing goods into the UK from countries inside and outside the EU. 

What does the Border Target Operating Model cover?

The Target Operating Model applies to imports of live animals, germinal products, animal products, plants and plant products from all countries into Great Britain, and describes the implementation of new security and biosecurity controls on imports from the EU.

How will the Target Operating Model be implemented?

The model will be implemented through three milestones, and the government is urging importers and their supply chains to start their preparations for the first milestone now.  

Key dates for your diary:

  • 31 October 2023 – The introduction of health certification on imports of medium risk animal products, plants, plant products and high-risk food (and feed) of non-animal origin from the EU. 
  • 31 January 2024 – The introduction of documentary and risk-based identity and physical checks on medium-risk animal products, plants, plant products and high-risk food (and feed) of non-animal origin from the EU. At this point, imports of Sanitary and Phytosanitary goods from the rest of the world will begin to benefit from the new risk-based model.  
  • 31 October 2024 – Safety and Security declarations for EU imports will come into force. Alongside this, we will introduce a reduced dataset for imports and use of the UK Single Trade Window will remove duplication where possible across different pre-arrival datasets. 

These milestones apply to medium – to high-risk animal products, plants, plant products and high-risk food (and feed) of non-animal origin (sanitary and phytosanitary goods). 

Will other products be impacted too?

It is important to consider the import requirements for low-risk sanitary and phytosanitary goods as well. These products include a wide range of fresh produce which don’t carry an identified pest/disease risk but where there isn’t sufficient evidence to confirm there is no risk. This also includes processed, shelf-stable products, such as composites, certain canned meat products, processed animal by-products, certain fishery products, and aquatic animal products from lower risk countries. 

The Border Target Operating Model outlines that the importation of low-risk consignments will have minimal routine border controls applied. Provision of a pre-notification and commercial documentation will still be required, but there would be no requirement for health certification or routine physical border checks. 

Low-risk consignments can only enter ports designated for their commodities

Irrespective of minimal routine border controls for these low-risk consignments, these goods would still need to enter via a port that has a Border Control Post (BCP) designated for that type of commodity. This requirement has been set because the BCP links to a port health authority to administer the pre-notification. If local evidence suggests that a physical inspection of a low-risk consignment is necessary, a Border Control Post is the most suitable location for this to occur. 

The requirement for goods to be routed via a port that has a BCP for the designated commodity could pose an issue for traders that import low-risk sanitary and phytosanitary goods via a port that has limited controls capability, such as the Port of Dover. 

How might Dover be impacted by the Border Target Operating Model?

As Dover is Europe’s busiest roll-on roll-off ferry port in the UK, and together with the Eurotunnel has the quickest route to and from Europe, Dover is a vital international gateway for the movement of trade. However, due to its limited border control capability, there is a serious risk of disruption to existing trade routes via the Port of Dover and the Eurotunnel for consignments containing sanitary and phytosanitary products. 

Make sure your business is prepared for these changes

Traders will need to consider this restriction of importing consignments containing sanitary and phytosanitary products via the Port of Dover and the Eurotunnel, and review alternative options if they do not want to run the risk of disruption. 

The draft Border Target Operating Model seeks feedback from stakeholders on all aspects of the Border Target Operating Model. We encourage traders to flag the risks associated with low-risk consignments whilst the Border Target Operating Model is still in draft to create awareness at the government level.

Useful links

The publication can be accessed: The Border Target Operating Model: Draft for Feedback

A press release containing additional background can be accessed at: UK Government publishes draft proposals for new border controls – GOV.UK (


To find out more about how the Border Target Operating Model could impact your business, please contact us directly.

Arjen Odems,

Maartje Meijer,

UK Parliament

Changes to UK Import Duty: is your business prepared?

Since the UK left the EU in 2021, new customs policies have been reviewed to support business and facilitate new trade agreements.

Currently, the UK has advance rulings for tariff classifications and origin of goods, but not for customs valuations. This can make it harder for traders to determine which customs valuation methodology is the most appropriate to establish the customs value for the calculation of the customs duties.

To address this problem and for traders to obtain confirmation on the customs value method to use, the UK Government aims to introduce the option to obtain an Advance Valuation Ruling (AVR).

In their policy paper, HMRC outlines the details and background relating to the AVR. The main aim being a written decision that is legally binding on the trader as well as on HMRC. Therefore, an AVR provides certainty to traders on how to determine the customs value, which serves as the basis to calculate the customs duties that are due.

The UK Government hopes that the AVR system will also contribute to their objective to deliver a modern digital customs service for traders in the UK, which in turn:

  • Enables the UK to meet the requirements of the new Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), and 
  • Support the UK’s accession to the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.

HMRC hopes that by introducing a legally binding valuation ruling, traders should find it easier to apply a certain customs value for their imports as well as to justify the appropriateness of the customs value to the customs clearing agents.

For further guidance and advice on how your business can prepare for these changes, please contact us directly:


Arjen Odems,

Maartje Meijer,

Canary Wharf

The Windsor Framework: what are the post-Brexit opportunities for UK businesses?

If you’ve been following UK politics and Brexit news in the last few weeks, you might be familiar with the phrase ‘Windsor Framework’, which has been in the headlines rather a lot. In particular, since UK MPs passed the bill by 515 to 29 votes on Wednesday, March 22nd.

To spare you endless jargonese, we’ve produced an 850-word summary of it in layman’s terms.

We’ll explain what the Windsor Framework is, why it’s important, and who might benefit from it.

To begin: what is the Windsor Framework?

This is a legal agreement that was revealed by the UK Government on February 27th, 2023. It is chiefly designed to alleviate the disruption caused by the post-Brexit Northern Ireland Protocol, which critics argue has undermined trade between Northern Ireland and Great Britain since it took effect on January 1st, 2021.

Why is the Windsor Framework such an important milestone for Brexit?

  • It should prevent a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland

Although a hard border was already averted under the Northern Ireland Protocol, businesses faced higher costs and more bureaucracy due to ‘burdensome customs processes, inflexible regulation, tax and spend discrepancies and democratic governance issues.’ The Windsor Framework is thus regarded as a long-term solution that eliminates the possibility of a hard border on the island of Ireland.

  • Facilitate faster movement of goods between Northern Ireland and Great Britain

The Windsor Framework is expected to substantially reduce the number of checks and controls on the movement of goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. This will be welcome news to businesses that have endured disruption since Brexit took effect.

Who may benefit the most from the Windsor Framework?

  • Trusted traders will benefit from significantly lower customs declaration costs

The Windsor Framework permanently enables the free movement of goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland, removing any sense of a border in the Irish Sea. It also expands the ‘green lane’ (the UK’s internal market scheme) to cut out time-consuming, costly customs processes and checks for businesses recognised as ‘trusted traders’.

UK businesses selling goods destined for Northern Ireland can become ‘trusted traders’ by proving to HMRC that their goods are not at risk of being moved to the EU and becoming subject to EU duty. These businesses must also meet all the necessary customs compliance requirements, and others, such as systems and controls, which you can learn more about on the website here.

For companies involved in manufacturing and processing, the turnover threshold for moving goods that will stay in Northern Ireland has quadrupled from £0.5 million to £2 million. Thus, this expands eligibility to about four fifths of manufacturing and processing companies in Northern Ireland that trade with Great Britain. But firms above this threshold will still be eligible to move goods if they are to be used for animal feed, healthcare, construction or not-for-profit sectors.

This is a 95-billion-Euro funding programme for research and innovation in Europe, afforded to countries in the EU and associated countries, the latter of which would apply to the UK. Funding is open to all organisations interested in engaging in ground-breaking research, new technology, or other projects to support climate change mitigation and improve food security.

  • The agreement could decrease the likelihood of a trade war between the UK and the EU

If the UK refused to agree a Brexit deal, the EU could retaliate by suspending the Trade and Cooperation Agreement. As you can imagine, this would be very disruptive for UK businesses, especially those that trade heavily with EU member states. Fortunately, the Windsor Framework renders this outcome highly unlikely.

  • The UK’s financial services sector could benefit from a new UK-EU Financial Regulatory Forum

The executive body of the EU revealed earlier this month its intention to finalise a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on financial services regulatory cooperation. Since Brexit, London has faced stiffer competition from EU financial hubs such as Amsterdam, Europe’s top share-trading venue in 2022, and Frankfurt, continental Europe’s leading financial centre in 2021. It is hoped the new forum could repair and potentially strengthen UK-EU relations in the financial sector, which in 2021 contributed roughly £174 billion to the UK economy – more than 8% of national economic output.

  • VAT could become more flexible for UK businesses

UK businesses will be allowed to charge reduced VAT rates on goods supplied and installed via immovable property. The UK will also be free to reduce VAT rates for a broader range of goods than is currently permitted under EU law. For example, the UK Government claims the Windsor Framework would save 2,000 Northern Ireland businesses from having to register for VAT under a 2025 EU Directive.

  • There could be a new UK-specific marketing authorisation and labelling system for medicines

The UK’s Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) could assess all medicinal products destined for the UK. Those that comply with UK laws could be labeled ‘UK only’ and could be moved freely between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The UK Government also claims the Windsor Framework ‘safeguards frictionless access to the EU market for world-leading Northern Ireland pharmaceutical and medical technology firms’.

  • Agricultural foods, such as pork and milk, will have reduced checks.

This could benefit supermarkets and other food retailers, whose products will no longer be subject to physical checks and tests. Visual inspections should be drastically cut from 100% to 5%.

When is the Windsor Framework expected to be implemented?

Parts of the agreement could take effect by May 2023, but it may not be fully operational until 2025.

It is also highly likely that there will be further negotiations and amendments to the Windsor Framework in the coming months and years.

How can you stay up to date with all things Brexit?

Follow us on LinkedIn to read more expert analyses on Windsor Framework and other Brexit news.

Or get in touch with Arjen or Maartje, who will be happy to assist you.


Arjen Odems,

Maartje Meijer,


Upcoming deadlines for import and export measures in the UK

Whilst 2023 is already well underway, it is important to consider the important milestones relating pending UK import and export measures that 2023 holds.

These milestones should be considered and addressed appropriately to avoid disruption of trade flows in and out of the UK. CDS export Exporters will have more time to move across to the new Customs Declaration Service (CDS).

The planned date of the 1st April 2023 no longer applies and traders now have until 30th November 2023 to continue using the CHIEF system for export declarations. CDS for exports will be introduced in a phased approach and the key phases are: › From late February 2023 – export declarants that only move goods through ports in the UK that use the Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS) – also known as non-inventory linked ports.

› From May 2023 – export declarants that currently use the National Export System (NES) web service to submit export declarations on CHIEF

› From September 2023 – export declarants using inventory-linked ports and DEPs

› From 30 November 2023 – All export declarations must be made using CDS Import controls The Government previously announced that the changes to import controls on certain products coming from the EU would not be introduced on 1 July 2022 as planned. These import controls now have a target launch date of end of 2023.

The list of controls that are now planned to be introduced by the end of 2023 is:

› A requirement for safety and security declarations on EU imports

› A requirement for health certification for further Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) imports

› A requirement for SPS goods to be presented at a Border Control Post (BCP)

› A requirement for SPS currently at destination to be moved to a BCP

› A requirement to issue Certificates of Inspection (COI) for organic imports

› A requirement for organic imports to be presented at a BCP

› Prohibitions and restrictions on the import of chilled meats from the EU

UKCA marking

The UKCA marking is the product marking used for products being placed on the market in Great Britain. The UKCA marking applies to most products for which the European CE marking could be used and would have become required per 1 January 2023.

To provide businesses with some flexibility, the UK government will bring forward legislation that continues to allow recognition of the CE marking for most goods that are being placed on the market until 31 December 2024.

It should be noted that UKCA marking is already available and can be used.


Importers of products from the EU currently benefit from the relative flexible UK import controls measures, at least until the above listed restrictions come into play. It is however pertinent that the UK and EU come to some sort of mutual recognition on the import controls topics to ensure a continuation of the market access for all goods.

With the agreement on 27 February 2023 relating the Northern Ireland situation (The Windsor Framework), the EU and the UK have made a first step to a closer relationship.

The expectation is that this also opens up the opportunity for further cooperation on some of the above mentioned topics, including the import controls. Nevertheless, the expectation is that some of these topics will not be resolved before the provided timeframes and further disruptions and increase in cost for doing business in the UK are still expected.


For any questions, please feel free to contact:

Arjen Odems,

Maartje Meijer,