I have been reading some information about the provisions coming in under the EC’s Union Customs Code and I am interested in the simplified procedures they mention called self-assessment. Can you give me some more information on it please, as I think it will be of benefit to our cashflow with regard to the payment of customs duties and VAT at import?

You are right about the potential benefits of being authorised to use “Self Assessment” which will become available when the EC’s Union Customs Code comes in fully (1st May 2016). This simplification relates to when a company would be expected to pay customs duties and VAT incurred on imports of goods from outside the EC. It will permit the company to bring goods into the EC without a financial declaration at import (though a customs declaration will still be required for security purposes). The amount of duty/VAT to be paid will then be submitted by the importer to HM Revenue & Customs on a monthly declaration, similar to the way VAT returns currently work. The payment of duty and VAT will be then be made periodically either monthly or quarterly as approved. It is expected that this simplification will only be available to businesses after 1 January 2020 that are approved under the Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) scheme. For more information on what you need to become AEO approved download Notice 117 from HMRC website. There are still issues to be agreed on this simplification and the actual implementing provisions (which will explain how to use this procedure) are not yet in place.


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