HMRC urges businesses to get ready to move to customs IT platform 

HMRC urges businesses to get ready to move to customs IT platform 
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Published: March 31st, 2022

Businesses across the Marches have been urged to make sure they have everything in place to continue trading with the EU. 

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) has written to VAT-registered businesses in Great Britain trading with the EU, or the EU and the rest of the world. 

The letter includes information about the work under way to move to a single UK customs platform – the Customs Declaration Service – and outlines what businesses need to do to prepare for the change, and what help and guidance is available to support them through the process. 

The Customs Declaration Service will become the UK single customs platform after 31 March 2023, replacing the Customs Handling Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system. Ahead of the complete closure, the import declaration function will be withdrawn on 30 September this year. 

The Customs Declaration Service is founded on advanced technology and provides an agile, scalable and secure platform which has processed more than 2.5 million declarations to date.  

HMRC is urging declarants to take advantage of help offered to start the migration to the Customs Declaration Service now – either by working with a software developer or Community System Provider, or by accessing the help themselves to get ready to move to the Customs Declaration Service which could take up to six months depending on the scale and complexity of the business. 

Katherine Green and Sophie Dean, HMRC Directors General for Borders and Trade, said: 

“We know the introduction of new rules can be challenging and appreciate all the efforts industry has already made to keep goods flowing. The Customs Declaration Service provides us with the capacity and capability to grow in line with the Government’s ambitious trade plans and to have the world’s most efficient customs system by 2025. 

“We understand a system change can take time which is why we are asking businesses to start the migration process now. 

“We’ll do everything we can to support businesses to get this right. Help is available online, through our guidance on GOV.UK, our webinars and over the phone.” 

To help businesses and agents prepare for the Customs Declaration Service, HMRC has published some key steps traders can follow

Businesses can also use HMRC’s helplines and webchat to get in touch. 

If businesses need extra help and guidance to meet their customs obligations they can: 

  • call the Customs and International Trade helpline on 0300 322 9434 – the helpline is available from 8am to 10pm Monday to Friday, and 8am to 4pm at weekends. 

Copies of the letter are available at 

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