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UK Updates EU Border Guidance

The government has issued new guidance on the UK’s Border Operating Model which will apply when the transition period ends on December 31, 2020

Published on October 9, 2020

Calais Port Calais, one of the major gateways to the EU from the UK

The UK government has updated its Border Operating Model, which details how the border with the European Union will work after the transition deal ends. The new model is set to be introduced on January 1, 2021.

Explaining the importance of the new model, Liam Smyth, Director of Trade Facilitation at the British Chamber of Commerce, said that the "announcement of a revised Border Operating Model provides some more of the detail that was missing from the version published less than 12 weeks ago. Duty deferment accounts and postponed VAT accounting will both help firms’ cashflow as we enter a period of huge change at our borders."

Smyth went on to say that "However, as highlighted in our recent unanswered questions document, businesses still have many areas where they urgently need more certainty, such as how the border between Northern Ireland and Great Britain will operate, clear guidance on rules of origin, which will only be done by ramping up government engagement with business."

Elizabeth de Jong, Policy Director at Logistics UK, also commented on the updates to the model. de Jong said that "Clarification on the arrangements for the UK’s borders with the EU at the end of the Transition Period is welcomed by our members, the organisations charged with moving goods and services to and from our nation’s largest trading partner. With less than 90 days to go until implementation, it is imperative that businesses seeking to sell their goods to companies in the EU make the most of this guidance to speed up their preparations and ensure that their paperwork is in order on 1 January 2021. Logistics organisations need their customers to prepare if they are to maintain a smooth flow of goods to and from the EU."

de Jong also called for greater clarity over the movement of goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland, describing detail as necessary so that "businesses can plan and logistics operators avoid delays".

To see the latest guidance on the Border Operating Model, go to www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-border-operating-model.

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