The UK Government has announced a change to the timetable for the introduction of full import controls for goods from the EU – and full customs declarations and controls will be introduced on 1 January 2022, although safety and security declarations will now not be required until 1 July 2022.
[One has to wait and see if there will be further delays, as there are doubts that the UK has the resources and arrangements in place, or will have in place, to even meet these target date – and it has been suggested by some commentators that the Government is merely “kicking the can down the road”, to avoid further delays and other problems becoming evidence – particularly around Christmas 2021].
The news release from the Cabinet Office on 14 September claimed that the purpose of the delays was to give businesses more time to adjust to new processes and was due to the Covid pandemic having affected supply chains in the UK and across Europe.
[However, it appears from media reports that only the UK, and more particularly GB, that has been particularly affected – by a combination of Brexit delays and the effects of Brexit on immigration and the shortage of former workers, especially lorry drivers, from the EU, as well as the pandemic].
The requirements for pre-notification of Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) goods, which were due to be introduced on 1 October, will now be introduced on 1 January. New requirements for Export Health Certificates, which were also due to be introduced on 1 October, will now be delayed until 1 July 2022. Phytosanitary Certificates and physical checks on SPS goods at Border Control Posts, due to be introduced on 1 January, have been delayed until 1 July 2022. Safety and Security declarations on imports will also delayed from 1 January to 1 July 2022. However, it is said that full customs declarations and controls will be introduced on 1 January 2022, as previously announced.
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