Businesses are being urged to prepare for the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020.

The UK is leaving the EU’s Single Market and Customs Union at the end of the year and there are some definite actions businesses need to take now. These actions are required whether we end up with Australian or Canadian-style trading arrangements.

  • If you sell goods to the EU you must prepare for new customs procedures. Visit GOV.UK to check duties and customs procedures for exporting your goods worldwide from 1 January 2021.
  • If you travel to the EU for work purposes you will need to check if you need a visa or work permit and apply if necessary.
  • If you employ overseas nationals you will need to prepare your business for the implementation of the new immigration system. From 1 January 2021, if you want to hire anyone from outside the UK, including from the EU, you must be a Home Office licenced sponsor.
  • If you are a UK business or organisation that receives personal data from contacts in the EEA, you may need to take extra steps to ensure that the data can continue to flow legally at the end of the transition period.
  • If you provide services in the EU, you must ensure that your qualifications are now recognised by EU regulations to be able to practice or service clients in the EU.

Businesses can get a personalised summary of the actions they need to take by using the simple tool on gov.uk/transition.

        GB-EU Border Operating Model published

The Government has published an updated Border Operating Model, which provides further detail on how the GB-EU border will work and the actions that traders, hauliers and passengers need to take.

Border controls and end of transition period

The Government announced on Friday 12 June that the transition period will not be extended and controls for importing goods will now apply from July 2021.

Recognising the impact of coronavirus on businesses’ ability to prepare, and following the announcement in February that the UK would implement full border controls on imports coming into GB from the EU, the UK has taken the decision to introduce the new border controls in three stages up until 1 July 2021.

The stages are:

From January 2021: Traders importing standard goods, covering everything from clothes to electronics, will need to prepare for basic customs requirements, such as keeping sufficient records of imported goods, and will have up to six months to complete customs declarations. While tariffs will need to be paid on all imports, payments can be deferred until the customs declaration has been made. There will be checks on controlled goods like alcohol and tobacco. Businesses will also need to consider how they account for VAT on imported goods. There will also be physical checks at the point of destination on all high risk live animals and a proportion of low-risk live animals.
From April 2021: All products of animal origin (POAO) – for example meat, pet food, honey, milk or egg products – and all regulated plants and plant products will also require pre-notification and the relevant health documentation.
From July 2021: Traders moving all goods will have to make declarations at the point of importation and pay relevant tariffs. Full Safety and Security declarations will be required, while for SPS commodities there will be an increase in physical checks and the taking of samples: checks for animals, plants and their products will now take place at GB Border Control Posts.