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  • BDO Brexit Update

    Update on EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement

Expert commentary:

Brexit | Update on EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement

04 January 2021

BDO Customs and International Trade team provide a summary of the new origin rules to comply with from 1 January under the EU-UK Trade Agreement.

New origin rules

Under the terms of the agreement, where goods qualify as originating in the EU or UK, these goods will not be subject to duty on import into either territory.

If goods do not qualify as originating then WTO rates will apply.

Therefore, your first step now is to:

  • Determine the tariff classification of your finished products
  • Check the applicable rule of origin to see if you qualify for the 0% rate
  • If not check the duty rate that will need to be paid to Revenue or HMRC
Goods qualifying as originating

For goods qualifying as “originating products” under the terms of the Agreement, there will be no customs duties applied on import from GB into Ireland or from Ireland/EU to GB.

In order to qualify as originating goods must either be

  • Wholly produced in the UK or EU; or
  • “Substantially transformed” in line with the specific origin rules applicable to the product being exported.

**Per HMRC – “To be considered ‘originating’ and qualify for preferential tariffs, products must be sufficiently worked or processed within the parties to the agreement. By contrast, ‘non-originating’ materials are materials imported from third countries. ‘Non-originating’ may also refer to materials whose origin is unknown or not possible to determine”. 

Confirming goods quality

To confirm the origin rule applicable to your product you need to

  • Confirm the Tariff Heading
  • Check the applicable rule for that heading
  • Ensure you meet the rule (you can cumulate EU and UK origin as one (under what is known as “bilateral cumulation”)
  • Obtain suppliers declaration of origin if you obtain goods from EU suppliers - in this case an easement has been introduced so that Suppliers Declarations (required to support verification of origin status) do not need to be in place when goods are exported but will need to be on file by 31st December 2021 for all 2021 exports which availed of the relief.
Claiming the 0% duty rate on import

To claim the 0% duty rate the Importer will be required to declare on the Import Declaration that they hold proof that the goods comply with the rules of origin.

This can be done either by providing a statement from the supplier on the attached commercial invoice (or other commercial documents that describe the goods; thereby confirming the origin status) or by way self-declaration based on your own knowledge and analysis.

If you are claiming the origin preference based on your own knowledge, you must have supporting documents and records and obtain sufficient evidence that the goods qualify as originating.

If you are using the invoice declaration, please see format at the end of this bulletin.

  • For exports from Ireland you will need to be registered on REX and quote your Rex number
  • For exports from the UK you will need to quote your GB EORI

Please also see below and update from Revenue:
https://www.revenue.ie/en/customs-traders-and-agents/customs-electronic-systems/aep/ecustoms-notifications/2020/aep-notification-036-2020.pdf

Northern Ireland

Trade between ROI and NI remains unchanged.

New rules have been introduced for imports from GB to NI which mirror the above from GB to ROI.

For specific advice or further information reach out to your BDO contact directly.


Now is the time to get ready and ensure you are ready to clear customs. Declaron are here to help you get moving and are offering free declarations to all of our registered customers until January 31st. Register at Declaron.ie to secure your customs clearance agent. 

DECLARON