UK Government sets out pragmatic new timetable for introducing border controls

  • Revised timetable will give businesses more time to adjust to new processes
  • Global pandemic has affected supply chains in the UK and across Europe
  • Controls will be phased in across 2022

The government has today set out a pragmatic new timetable for introducing full import controls for goods being imported from the EU to the UK.

Businesses have faced a range of challenges over recent months as they recover from the global pandemic which has impacted supply chains across Europe. This is being felt particularly by the agri-food sector, where new requirements on importing products of animal origin were due to be introduced from next month. Rather than introduce these controls at this time, the government has listened to those who have called for a new approach to give businesses more time to adjust.

Full customs declarations and controls will be introduced on 1 January 2022 as previously announced, although safety and security declarations will now not be required until 1 July 2022.

Under the revised timetable:

  • The requirements for pre-notification of Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) goods, which were due to be introduced on 1 October 2021, will now be introduced on 1 January 2022.
  • The new requirements for Export Health Certificates, which were due to be introduced on 1 October 2021, will now be introduced on 1 July 2022.
  • Phytosanitary Certificates and physical checks on SPS goods at Border Control Posts, due to be introduced on 1 January 2022, will now be introduced on 1 July 2022.
  • Safety and Security declarations on imports will be required as of 1 July 2022 as opposed to 1 January 2022.
    Full customs declarations and controls will be introduced on 1 January 2022 as previously announced.

Minister of State at the Cabinet Office, Lord Frost, said:

We want businesses to focus on their recovery from the pandemic rather than have to deal with new requirements at the border, which is why we’ve set out a pragmatic new timetable for introducing full border controls.

Businesses will now have more time to prepare for these controls which will be phased in throughout 2022.

The government remains on track to deliver the new systems, infrastructure and resourcing required.

The government will work closely with the Devolved Administrations on the implementation of this new timetable, given their devolved responsibilities for agri-food controls.

We remain on track to deliver new systems, infrastructure and resourcing needed for these controls.

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