On the 1st of January, the UK and the EU will terminate its transition period after the UK left the EU on the 31st of January 2020.
At the moment no trade deal has been agreed between the EU and the UK however this may change in the coming weeks. Details of any agreements are still unknown making it difficult for customers and businesses to plan for the outcome.
Due to this, there are two potential outcome scenarios:
1 – The EU and UK agree on a trade deal
2 – A No-Deal Scenario
Both scenarios will lead to changes in how UK shipments to and from the EU will operate however NI Parcels will have all information available as soon as we know the next steps put in place by the EU and the UK.
To help prepare for the end of the transition period NI Parcels will be suspending our NI Parcels Economy and DPD services on routes between the UK and EU from the 21st of December 2020 until the 15th January 2021.
This is to help prevent any of our customer’s shipments being adversely affected by the end of the transition period and any logistical changes required for a shipment. You can still send shipments on the Express service as this will ensure that your shipment will be sent on the fastest service available with minimal delay.
After the end of the transition period and depending on the outcome of any trade deal negotiations, you may be required to complete customs documents for your shipment if going between the UK and EU. We will provide you with these if required.
This will not affect shipments that you already send outside of the EU (e.g NI to USA) as the same procedures as before, such as the requirement for customs documents, will still apply.
We would advise all customers sending between the UK and the EU to please be aware of potential delays due to this unprecedented change and also due to a potential backlog in the processing of shipments due to this change.
Will this affect shipping between Northern Ireland and the UK Mainland?
At the moment, the current working agreement means that shipments coming from the UK Mainland to Northern Ireland will require checks of some sort however these checks have not been detailed as of yet.
For shipments going from Northern Ireland to the UK Mainland, unfettered access with no checks has been promised however this may change and checks may still be required.
Will this affect shipping between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland?
The current working agreement implies there will be no checks on shipments between NI and Ireland in both directions however this may change depending on the outcome of talks.
What about shipments going from Northern Ireland and EU Countries e.g NI to France?
The current working agreement implies that shipments to and from the EU and Northern Ireland will be the only part of the UK without checks however this may change. At the moment only shipments to and from the UK Mainland and other EU nations will require formal checks. This will include shipping between UK Mainland and the Republic of Ireland.
Can I send my shipments from the UK Mainland to Northern Ireland to have then shipped onwards to Ireland without checks?
No, as shipments from the UK Mainland to Northern Ireland will require checks, this will not benefit your shipping experience. We recommend shipping directly from the UK Mainland to Ireland and dealing with any potential checks.
Will I still need to pay VAT on shipments to and from the EU?
If there is a No Deal scenario, you will likely no longer need to pay VAT for shipments similar to how VAT is not charged on current routes where customs checks are required. However, customs charges may still be applicable and you as the sender are ultimately responsible for any customs charges. If you are sending to an EU country you must make your recipient aware of potential customs charges as, if they refuse to pay them, you will become liable for these charges.
What is an EORI number?
In the UK, an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number is assigned to importers and exporters by HMRC and is used during the customs clearance process for both import and export shipments travelling to or from the EU and countries outside the EU. In a post-transition world, it will be a mandatory requirement to have an EORI number to ship into the EU from the UK.
You can apply for an EORI Number by clicking here: www.gov.uk/eori We recommend applying for this regardless of the outcome of any trade deal negotiations.