What is the general situation regarding customs requirements for my EU suppliers?

For the purposes of customs, the UK is now treated as any other non-EU country. In particular, customs procedures and formalities apply to trade between the UK and the EU.

However, in accordance with the agreed Protocol on Ireland and Northern Ireland, EU customs rules and procedures generally continue to apply to goods entering and leaving Northern Ireland.

The UK’s withdrawal from the EU affects your company if you work with EU suppliers that:

  • sell goods or supplies services to the UK
  • buys goods or receives services from the UK
  • moves goods through the UK

In the area of tax and customs, this means, for example:

  • They will need to file customs declarations when importing or exporting any goods to/from Great Britain (the UK excluding Northern Ireland) or when moving your goods through Great Britain.
  • They may need to provide security and safety data, in addition to the customs declaration.
  • They will have to comply with different VAT rules and procedures for transactions with Great Britain than for transactions within the EU and with Northern Ireland.

To assist businesses, the European Commission has published detailed guidelines on a wide range of specific topics. In the area of tax and customs, the relevant guidelines can be found below:

EU-UK: A new relationship | Taxation and Customs Union (europa.eu)