6 May 2014

Did You Know? Issue 182

6th May 2014

1. New UK OGEL – A400M: 2. Inward Processing (Suspension): 3. Update – Russia/Ukraine sanctions: 4. EU and Ukraine preference agreement: 5. Singapore Publishes Revised Strategic Trade Scheme Handbook 6. EU Visa-Free Travel Agreed for 16 countries: 7. NCTS- ECS-ICS: 8. A Guide for users on GSP rules of origin: 9. Updated Customs Notices

1. New UK OGEL – A400M: 23rd April 2014: The Export Control Organisation has published Open General Export Licence (Military Goods: A400M Collaborative Programme).  The A400M Open General Export Licence (OGEL) has been developed to support a collaborative programme with seven partner countries (Belgium, France, Germany, Luxemburg, Spain, Turkey and the UK) and one export customer (Malaysia), to provide airlifter aircraft.  This OGEL will permit the export or transfer of the majority of goods, software and technology required for the production and maintenance of A400M, for the end-use of all the listed partner nations and agreed export customer. Read More
2. Inward Processing (Suspension): New Bill of Discharge i-form (C&E 812) 1st May 2014.  The BoD i-form C&E812 will be available on the HMRC website from 1 May 2014. The new form is designed to ensure that all the relevant information is submitted to the Customs Supervising Office by highlighting fields which are not completed before you can move on to the next section. IP authorised traders are requested to start using the new i-form as soon as possible. However, for an interim a period of three months, the Supervising Offices will continue to accept C&E812 form in its old format. Traders who have approval from their Authorising/Supervising Office to submit BoD information in an agreed format (but not using the form C&E 812) may continue with this process unless notified otherwise. You should note that the paper version of the C&E 812 will not be available on the HMRC website after 1 May therefore if you intend to use the paper version for an interim period you will need to have printed off some blank forms, if you need a copy get in touch with us at Strong & Herd as we have a version we can email to you.  Also be aware that Notice 221 was updated in April 2014.  Link to new i-form
3. Update – Russia/Ukraine sanctions: Last week, the United States and the European Union imposed additional, targeted sanctions on certain Russian government officials and companies linked to President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle, expanding upon previously announced US and EU Ukraine-related sanctions.  In addition, President Obama’s administration imposed additional restrictive measures on exports that “could contribute” to Russia’s military capabilities.  The new US and EU sanctions were imposed in response to Russia’s perceived failure to take concrete steps to meet its obligations under the April 17 Geneva Agreement, and Russia’s continuing violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.  While the sanctions imposed to date have been limited in scope, they have expanded considerably and, in recent days, US and EU officials have stated that they are prepared to impose more comprehensive sanctions targeting key sectors of Russia’s economy – likely to include the financial and energy sectors – in the event that Russia takes additional actions to escalate the situation in Ukraine. 
4. EU and Ukraine preference agreement: The introduction on 23 April 2014 of the reduction or elimination of customs duties on goods originating in Ukraine and restrictions to be applied in respect of Crimea.  On 16 April 2014, the European Parliament and the Council adopted Regulation (EU) No 374/2014 on the reduction or elimination of customs duties on goods originating in Ukraine. It applies from 23 April 2014 and, unless the Association Agreement with Ukraine enters into force in the meantime, will remain in force until 1 November 2014 at the latest.  Claims to preference under these arrangements, both within and outside of the quota restrictions, must be supported by a valid EUR 1 certificate issued in Ukraine or, for consignments of a value not exceeding EUR 6000 , an origin declaration. The proof of origin should be made out in one of the official languages of the EU.  The competent authorities designated for issuing EUR.1s for the application of these autonomous trade measures are the Ukrainian Chambers of Commerce. However, this does not include the Crimean Chamber of Commerce and its branches and the Chamber of Commerce of Sevastopol, who will not have the powers to issue EUR.1s under these arrangements.
5. Singapore Publishes Revised Strategic Trade Scheme Handbook Singapore Customs has posted on its website a revised copy of its Strategic Trade Scheme (STS) Handbook. The Strategic Trade Scheme (STS) is an enhanced permit regime which was implemented on 18 June 2007 so as to mitigate the possible impact on legitimate strategic goods trade. The STS seeks to promote effective internal export control compliance and provide legitimate traders with greater facilitation in permit declarations involving transactions of strategic goods for non-WMD related end-use. The STS comprises Individual and Bulk, whereby the level of facilitation and flexibility accorded to a company will be contingent upon their quality of internal export control compliance programme and the nature of the transactions involved. Click here for further details on specific STS permit requirements.
6. EU Visa-Free Travel Agreed for 16 countries:Nationals from 16 small island nations in the Caribbean and Pacific regions, the United Arab Emirates, Peru and Colombia will now be able to come to the Schengen area of the European Union without a visa.  Commissioner of the European Parliament has confirmed that it has voted in favour of visa-free travel for the nationals of 19 countries. "I am pleased that once the necessary procedures are completed. This will open up opportunities and advantages also for EU citizens, as any existing visa requirement for EU citizens to travel to these countries will be eliminated," Cecilia Malmstrom, commissioner for home affairs said.  Malmstrom added, "The solution found to include Peru and Colombia on the visa-free list is a good result. It strikes the right balance between the desire to offer visa-free travel to Peruvian and Colombian nationals and the need to avoid migratory risks and safeguard the security of the EU. In this regard, the Commission is committed to prepare the necessary additional assessment for Peru and Colombia as soon as possible." European Union opens doors to 16 island nations
7. NCTS- ECS-ICS: An upgrade is due to take place on 2 June 2014.  It will be necessary for HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to take the ECS and NCTS down in order to apply the upgrade. This will affect both those who access ECS or NCTS via the HMRC Online Services and those who use a Third Party Software Supplier.
The indicative downtime for NCTS is currently scheduled for 08.00 to 23.59 on Monday 2 June 2014 and for ECS it is also scheduled for 08.00 to 23.59. However, systems may be restored earlier.  In addition, the ICS Release 6 is scheduled for implementation to the live system on 1 June 2014.
NCTS/ECS: See Customs Information Paper (14) 31 for more information 
ICS: See Customs Information Paper (14) 32 for more information
8. A Guide for users on GSP rules of origin: The Commission has prepared a guide on how to interpret and implement the rules of origin that determine whether or not goods produced in the beneficiary countries are eligible for preferential tariff treatment under the EU's Scheme of General System of Preferences (GSP) for developing countries. Link
9. Updated Customs Notices
Notice 162 April 2014: Cider production
Notice 163: Wine Production
Notice 175: Motor & heating fuels:relief from excise duty: This notice cancels and replaces Notice 157
Notice 179e - Biofuels and other fuel substitutes
Notice 207: Excise Duty: Drawback
Notice 221 - Inward processing relief
Notice 226: Beer Duty
Notice 236: Customs: Importing returned goods free of duty and tax
Notice 700/12 - Filing in your VAT return
Notice 700/56: Insolvency
Notice 732 - Annual accounting
Notice CCL1/5: Climate change levy - penalties and interest
Notice 700/60 - Payments on account
Notice 702: Imports
Notice 708: Buildings and Construction

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