HMRC urges businesses to prepare for January customs changes

HMRC urges businesses to prepare for January customs changes

Published: December 22nd, 2021

More details of changes to Customs and VAT procedures for goods moving between the UK and EU in the new year have been announced by the Government. 

The government has announced that current customs arrangements for goods moving from Ireland and Northern Ireland to Great Britain will be extended for as long as discussions between the UK and EU on the operation of the Northern Ireland Protocol are ongoing. 

This means that full customs controls will be introduced as planned on 1 January 2022 for goods moving between the EU and Great Britain, except from Ireland. 

HMRC is now urging businesses to be ready for the changes as  some of the temporary Customs and VAT easements introduced at the start of the year for goods moving between Great Britain and the EU will be removed on January 1 2022.  

HMRC is assisting traders and businesses to adapt to these changes, writing to traders and delivering webinars to explain the new customs rules that start in the New Year, the action that they need to take, and the support on offer from HMRC.  

The changes coming into force on 1 January 2022 include:  

  • requirement for full customs import declarations for all goods at the time businesses or their courier/freight forwarder bring them into Great Britain, except if they are non-controlled goods imported from Ireland to Great Britain 
  •  customs controls at all ports and other border locations 
  •  requirement for a suppliers’ declaration proving the origin of goods (either UK or EU) if they are using the zero tariffs agreed in the UK’s trade deal with the EU 
  • commodity codes, which are used to classify goods for customs declarations, are changing 

If businesses move goods into or out of Northern Ireland, the free Trader Support Service can guide them through the process.  

More information on the changes can be found at 

Further guidance can be found at and more resources at 

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