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Brexit and customs processes

The UK Brexit transition period ended on 31 December 2020. New rules apply from 1 January 2021. This page brings together guidance and news from ICAEW, as well as externally-produced resources that provide practical information on navigating the new customs processes and procedures for international trade.

Need to know

Latest news and insights

Brexit transition: 25 days to go

4 December 2020: With a little over three weeks to go until the end of the Brexit transition period, ICAEW’s Rachel Underhill and John Boulton look at some key considerations for businesses and advisers.

Guides and FAQs

UK VAT implications of Brexit

In the event that the UK reaches no agreement after the end of the transition period, the UK Government has indicated that there will be a number of changes to the VAT rules, which we summarise. Join ICAEW's Tax Faculty for more guidance and Know-How content.

Brexit grants for customs declarations

Once the transition period ends on 31 December 2020, businesses will need to complete customs declarations for goods crossing the UK border (except goods moving between Northern Ireland and Ireland). Funding to help with completing the customs declarations has been made available by HMRC.

Government guidance on Brexit

The UK government and the European Commission (EC) have published guidance to help citizens and businesses understand the potential implications of the UK leaving the EU. This overview, part of ICAEW's Know-How series, helps you navigate through this guidance. Government guidance is expected to continue to evolve.

Taxation (Cross-border Trade) Act 2018

The Taxation (Cross-border Trade) Act 2018 received Royal Assent on 13 September 2018. The Act seeks to replace the current EU Union Customs Code and amend current UK VAT and excise duty laws in connection with the withdrawal of the UK from the EU.


An exporters guide to Brexit

This webinar, in partnership with MHA MacInytre Hudson, explores export supply chain scenarios and highlights areas that UK businesses must consider as part of their Brexit planning to avoid unnecessary delays or compliance failures. It covers INCOTERMS for reviewing contracts, options for minimising customs duties, and labelling requirements.

The trading landscape after Brexit - the customs perspective

The departure of the UK from the EU in March 2019 is a once in a generation change of profound significance. In July 2018, ICAEW and Chartered Accountants Ireland teamed up to publish a guide to Brexit designed to help our members advising UK and Irish businesses how to navigate this seminal change.

External resources

What are customs import declarations?

HMRC webinar explaining how to make import declarations to import goods between the EU and Great Britain, including simplified and supplementary declarations, as well as the key terminology and new processes.

HMRC Brexit transition communications resources

Set of leaflets designed for firms to hand out to clients and customers covering exporting, importing, a trader checklist, and travel to and from the UK after the end of the Brexit transition period.

Ongoing customs movements and procedures at the end of the transition period

Guidance for businesses and individuals on what to do if you're moving goods or have goods in customs procedures at the end of the transition period. This covers goods moving between the EU and Great Britain, goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and goods between Great Britain and a non-EU country via an EU Member State.

Check UK trade tariffs from 1 January 2021

Tool for businesses to check the UK Global Tariff that will apply to imported goods from 1 January 2021. The tables show the current Common External Tariff, the UK Global Tariff and if there is a change.