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Honda is stating a 15-minute delay at the border to add £850,000 a year

In 2018 the UK exported £291 billion to the European Union. Imports from the EU into the UK were £357 billion. This is a lot of trade and goods coming in and out of the UK. 

The UK has left the EU, formal trade negotiation talks have begun, and importers exporters are desperate for clarity. 

On the 10th February, Michael Grove spoke. But I can’t go as far as to say he settled any nerves. There have been talks of a new smart border, but this he stated would be 2025 at the earliest. This is turn has led to exporters and importers will face huge costs until this is in place. These costs will be associated with “bureaucracy” according to Gove, which is often code for paperwork. 

From 2021 organisations will have to make customs declarations to move goods into or around the EU. As a starting point make sure your business has an EORI number. Make sure you have commodity goods codes for your products, to ensure appropriate duty. 

Start talking to HMRC and have the right paperwork ready for 2021. This might include: 

  • Goods Description 

  • Packing List 

  • Cargo Weight 

  • Commercial Invoice incl. Sales Value and Currency for the Goods - Incoterms 

  • County of Origin of the Cargo – this may be different to the country the goods are consigned from. 

  • Commodity Code and Tariff Number 

  • Licence requirements 

  • Health or Phyto Certs 

  • EORI number 

  • Incoterms 

  • Importer details 

  • Exporter details 


What do we do now? 

Managing your documentation is essential. Create robust audit trails. Make saving this associated paperwork simple. There is a good chance paper copies and PDF submissions will be needed in the transition period, until the new system “smart border” is up and running.  

Pauline Bastidon, the head of European policy at the Freight Transport Association, said full checks would have “serious consequences for supply chains, and would be an unwelcome departure from the previous pragmatic approach”. 

Honda has been public in stating that a 15-minute delay at the border could add around £850,000 a year.  

The next few years could have a significant effect on organisations’ profitability, and impact supply chains. 

If you think Brexit could affect your business, the British Chamber has a great check list as a handy starting point: 


If you are facing export concerns, and would like to talk to the Restore Digital Team about how a document management system with workflow automation can support your organisation, get in touch through and one of our team will be in touch within 24 hours.  
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