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UK only 20% businesses Brexit customs ready


HMRC has stated that only 20% of UK businesses its estimates will need a customs declaration EORI number following Brexit has applied.

HMRC estimates that 245,000 businesses buy and sell goods with other EU27 states. As part of Brexit, the UK also leaves the Customs Union on 29 March. All movements of goods must be declared for customs, tariffs and VAT. This requires an EORI number (Economic Operator Registration Identification), which is shown on customs declarations etc.

Yesterday, at the 4 March 2019 Public Accounts Committee hearings on HMRC’s preparations for no-deal Brexit, HMRC’s Jon Thomson (Chief Executive) said only 46,616 businesses had applied so far. As a result, HRMC has agreed that Border Agency staff will waive any non-compliant companies after 29 March – but with a warning to register.  This risks creating a simple loophole for customs and import VAT fraud.

In addition, HMRC said EU27 tax authorities are ‘refusing’ to talk to HMRC about their requirements (EORI, duty and import VAT requirements apply there, too). But it is known that the countries are committed to imposing customs controls.


Latest British news

UK only 20% businesses Brexit customs ready

March 5, 2019

HMRC estimates that 245,000 businesses buy and sell goods with other EU27 states. When the UK leaves the Customs Union, 29 March, all movements of goods must be declared for customs, tariffs and VAT. This requires an EORI number (Economic Operator Registration Identification), which is shown on customs declarations etc.

HMRC warns digital companies on new Brexit VAT obligations

March 1, 2019

HMRC is writing to thousands of UK, US and other international sellers of digital services to warn them to now VAT register in another EU state in readiness for a no-deal Brexit. This covers their sales of e-services, apps, streaming media, online gaming and dating, e-books and software to EU consumers.

UK £135 small parcel VAT portal opens for Brexit

February 14, 2019

The UK’s HMRC has opened the registration portal for foreign delivery companies to register post-Brexit VAT on consumer good parcels below £135. This new regime will be triggered under the current default no-transition deal Brexit on 29 March 2019.



VP Global Indirect Tax
Richard Asquith
VP Global Indirect Tax Richard Asquith
Richard Asquith is VP Global Indirect Tax at Avalara, helping businesses understand their compliance obligations as they grow globally. He is part of the European leadership team which this year won International Tax Review's Tax Technology Firm of the Year. Richard qualified as an accountant with KPMG in the UK, and went on to work in Hungary, Russia and France with EY.
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