Several documents are required when importing goods to the UK and EU and exporting out of the UK and EU. These include customs declarations, outward processing relief, and Union Transit.
- Authorised Economic Operator status
The Authorised Economic Operator or AEO status is an internationally recognised quality mark that shows that the role of your parcel delivery service is secure in the international supply chain and has customs control procedures that meet UK and EU standards.
There are two types of AEO status; Authorised Economic Operator customs simplification (AEOC) and Authorised Economic Operator security and safety (AEOS). With AEOC, you can benefit from a faster application process for customs simplifications and authorisations, a reduction or waiver of comprehensive guarantees, and a 70 percent reduction in a business’s deferment account guarantee.
The benefits awarded by AEOS include a lower risk score, reduced declaration requirements for entry and exit summary declarations for countries outside the UK and EU, and reciprocal arrangements and mutual recognition with countries outside the EU.
- Customs declarations
Freight forwarders UK deal with two types of customs declarations; Customs declarations for goods brought into the UK or EU and customs declarations for goods sent out of the UK or EU.
If you are a UK-based parcel delivery service bringing in goods to the UK or EU, you will be required to complete an import declaration to get your goods through customs. You can submit your declarations electronically through the Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system.
If your business provides cargo services to India or wishes to send a parcel to Sri Lanka or anywhere outside of the UK or EU, you must complete an export declaration. For most goods, you will be required to make a full declaration before the goods arrive at the port of export.
You can submit your declaration electronically through the National Export System but there are different rules for carrying merchandise in your baggage with a value less than £873 and exporting goods by post.
- Moving goods within the UK and across partner countries
Shipping services that wish to move non-EU goods within the UK or EU will be required to use the Union Transit (UT) procedure. This procedure is also used when moving goods to or from special territories, which are the Aland Islands, the Canary Islands, the Channel Islands, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Mount Athos, and Reunion.
UT is also used to control the movement of certain goods between the UK or EU and Andorra, as well as between the UK or EU and San Marino.
If your shipping cargo service goods fall under UT, they must be presented to customs at the office of the destination.
- Temporary admission
Freight forwarders UK that are temporarily importing goods like samples, professional equipment, or items for exhibitions or auctions will be granted temporary admission or TA. If the freight forwarders UK do not alter the goods while they are within the EU, the TA will exempt the goods from duty or import VAT.
- Outward processing relief
EU traders can temporarily export goods from the EU for processing or repair in a third non-EU country and claim full or partial duty relief when the goods are re-imported through outward processing relief or OPR.
OPR cannot be used in conjunction with the Common Agricultural Policy and goods eligible for OPR must originate in the EU and must have been imported to free circulation within the EU with all customs formalities completed and customs charges paid in full.
Whether you wish to send a parcel to Sri Lanka or set up freight forwarding services or cargo service to India, you will be required to get various licensing. If you are planning to import regulated horticultural, plants, live animals, and animal products, you will be required to use the Automatic Licence Verification System (ALVS).
The ALS provides a link between the import and export licence application systems of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), and HMRC Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) declaration system.
- Records, paperwork, and checks
Freight forwarding companies are also required to keep records for all traded goods declared to HMRC for four years for duty and tax purposes and for government statistics. Delivery companies may also be required to obtain necessary international trade paperwork like contracts, licences, declarations, and documents to import and export goods and services.