Brexit: this time it’s real and businesses need to prepare as Government publishes new Border Operating Model


  • General news

15 July 2020


Following the UK Government’s decision that there would be no extension of the transition period beyond 31 December 2020, and with the deadline for an extension now passed, the UK will be leaving the EU single market and customs union in less than six months’ time.

On Monday (13 July) the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Michael Gove, launched the publication of the UK Government's Border Operation Model (BOM), the system by which the UK's borders will operate following the end of the Implementation Period on 31 December 2020. Although talks continue on a free trade agreement with the EU, much of the BOM will apply whether or not a deal is struck, leading to new checks and tariffs on goods as they travel through Great Britain (details on how Northern Ireland will manage its border is expected to be published in the coming weeks).

The document covers all of the processes and systems, across all government departments, that will be used for moving goods at the border with the EU from January 2021, including information about controlled goods and new government systems that will support trade.

Actions that businesses need to take in preparation include:

  • getting a customs intermediary to help complete formalities and submit the required customs declarations
  • applying for a duty deferment account to enable customs charges to be paid once a month through Direct Debit instead of individually
  • preparing to pay or account for VAT on imported goods
  • applying for a GB Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number which is required for any business moving goods into or out of the UK.

Mr Gove also announced a major new public information campaign - The UK's new start: let's get goingaimed at helping businesses and individuals prepare for the end of the transition period. The campaign sees the launch of a specialist team that will provide one-to-one support in person or over the phone to businesses and their supply chains to minimise disruption to the movement of goods.

The link to the Border Operating Model is here and actions that businesses need to take to trade with the EU can be found here.