Responding to the publication of Government plans on the future of Border controls, William Bain, Head of Trade Policy at the BCC, said:

The UK Government is intent on proceeding with the phase-in of inbound Great Britain border and customs controls for EU imports in October 2021 and January 2022 as planned.

Business has been preparing hard to be ready for these timelines, with many making use of the BCC’s ChamberCustoms services.

“It is now vital we get confirmation that the infrastructure and processes for controls relating to food, animal and plant products (sanitary and phytosanitary [SPS]) will be in place at ports across Great Britain.

“These need to be fully functional and integrated to work alongside systems for customs declarations, and safety and security documentation.

Businesses and their suppliers need confidence that delays and problems in importing goods from the EU will not occur after these deadlines.  

HMRC data suggests inbound customs declarations on EU goods could cost businesses as much as £7.5bn per year from next January.

For hard-pressed companies further support, through an extension to the SME Brexit Support Fund into next year, is needed to help them adjust financially for this new phase of the biggest change in trading terms with the rest of Europe for half a century.” 

Full details of the government's plans for border controls can be found here: