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PRESS RELEASE: Brief guidelines on the Customs procedures in case of a no-deal scenario

In view of the current situation in UK politics, whereby it is a bit unclear whether the United Kingdom will withdraw from the European Union with or without a deal by the end of October 2019 or whether there will be another extension, the Customs Department would like to circulate the subjoined notice to all economic operators and the general public.

The Customs Department remains committed to get back with any additional information if the current scenario changes and when further directions from the EU Commission are communicated.

Brief guidelines on the Customs procedures to be followed in case of a no-deal scenario upon the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union

General cargo, parcels and express freight

 In the event of the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union without a deal, the Customs Department will, essentially, extend its current procedures relating to goods imported from and exported to non-EU countries, also from and to the UK.

In practical terms, all imports from and exports to the UK have to be covered by Customs formalities. This means that these consignments have to be covered by a Customs declaration, where all the associated duties and other relevant taxes such as VAT and excise have to be paid prior to releasing the goods for free circulation within the EU. The procedure will be the same as that currently employed (for example) for imports or exports to the United States, Japan or any other third country to the EU. This also includes imports and exports of parcels by post and by fast parcel operators.

For example, an importation of (new or used) cars will be subject to 10% duty and 18% vat, while a consignment of clothing will be subject to 12% duty and 18% vat. A consignment of rubber tyres would be subject to 4.5% duty, 18% vat and 70 cents per kilogramme excise duty.

 Industry

The local industry that sources raw material from the UK for further processing and eventual export, can benefit from reliefs from import duties by applying for an import authorisation under the Inward Processing procedure (subject to fulfilling the relevant conditions).

Risk-based approach

The Department will adopt a risk-based approach over consignments originating from or destined to the United Kingdom. This will be fully in line with the current approach implemented by the Department over the movement of goods, from and to, other third countries.

Passenger traffic

Inbound passengers from the UK can no longer make use of the EU channel (aka the blue channel) but have to choose between either the green channel if they have nothing to declare or the red channel if they have goods to declare.

 Possible preparations from the trade sector 

· EORI Number

The Customs Department is again, calling on those economic operators who either solely trade with the United Kingdom, or who trade exclusively with the United Kingdom and the European Union, to register and obtain an Economic Operator Registration Identification (EORI) number to be able to lodge declarations for their imports and exports. Economic operators can initiate the EORI registration process by sending an e-mail to: eori.customs@gov.mt.

Further details may be obtained through the following link  https://customs.gov.mt/bus/economic-operators-registration-identification

· Authorised Economic Operator

The Customs Department would also like to encourage economic operators to apply for an Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) status. There are several trade facilitation incentives that AEOs can benefit from. Additional information can be found on the Customs Department’s website – www.customs.gov.mt under the ‘Businesses and Trade’ tab, ‘Authorised Economic Operators’ tab.

 Training

While training on use of the National Import System, and the National Export System has already been delivered, the Customs Department would like to renew its offer to those economic operators who either solely trade with the United Kingdom, or who trade exclusively with the United Kingdom and the European Union. Applications in this regard, should be forwarded by e-mail to the Customs Training Unit on customs.training@gov.mt.

 On-line payment

 In due course, the Department will also launch an on-line payment system for import declarations. This will reduce the queues at the Department’s cash points.

 More Information

 All detailed information associated with BREXIT and its effect on Customs procedures can be found on the Customs Department’s website – www.customs.gov.mt under the ‘Businesses and Trade’ tab, ‘BREXIT for Business’ tab.

 Any additional enquiries can be relayed to the Customer Services office e-mail frontoffice.customs@gov.mt or telephone numbers 25685120 / 3/ 8.