If you’re moving goods outside the UK, you’ll need to make an exit summary declaration if you’ve not fulfilled safety and security requirements with a full customs export declaration.
Safety and security information must be provided for all export movements out of Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales), unless they are going to Northern Ireland. There is a requirement to submit export information for some movements out of Northern Ireland, unless they are going to the EU.
Most goods being exported will be covered by a full export declaration which includes safety and security data, so an exit summary declaration is not a common requirement.
Exit summary declarations are submitted on the Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system, in the same way as an export declaration, for goods exported from Great Britain.
They’re submitted on the Customs Declaration Service (CDS), for goods exported from Northern Ireland.
When moving goods to and from countries outside the UK, you should check the customs requirements and safety and security procedures with the relevant customs authorities of that country.
Who must submit
The operator of the active means of transport, (for example, the vessel, aircraft, train or road vehicle) has the legal responsibility to make sure the UK customs authority is provided with pre-departure safety and security information. This could be a:
- haulier for accompanied movements
- carrier for unaccompanied movements
You might choose to use a customs intermediary to fill this requirement on your behalf.
When an exit summary declaration is required
An exit summary declaration is required when:
- empty pallets, containers, vehicles are moved under a transport contract (including empty reusable packaging such as stillages or roll-cages)
- goods have remained in temporary storage for more than 14 days
- goods have remained in temporary storage for less than 14 days, but the import safety and security declaration details are unknown, or the destination or consignee has changed
- goods are moved under transit and there is no full export declaration, using either a:
- transit accompanying document (TAD)
- transit security accompanying document (TSAD)
- transports internationaux routiers (TIR) carnet document
A transport contract, or contract of carriage, such as a CMR, bill of lading or air waybill is an agreement between a carrier and shipper of the consignment, setting out each party’s duties and rights.
Carriers moving their own empty units, or hauliers driving their own empty vehicles, may not be moving these under a transport contract.
When an exit summary declaration is not required
You do not need to submit safety and security export declarations for goods moving:
- from Great Britain to Northern Ireland
- under common transit procedures from Great Britain to the Republic of Ireland, where the goods are destined for Northern Ireland
Some exports do not need a declaration, including those that are:
- electrical energy
- goods leaving by pipeline
- goods contained in a travellers’ personal baggage
- goods covered by ATA or CPD carnets
- empty pallets, containers and vehicles when they are not being moved under a transport contract
Find a full list of goods exempted from the requirement to submit safety and security export declarations in Article 245 of Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2015/2446.
Before you submit
You must have an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number.
You will need to:
- apply for access to CHIEF
- buy commercial software that can submit declarations through CHIEF or be registered for the National Export System (NES)
Your declaration will need to include information like:
- your Declaration Unique Consignment Reference (DUCR)
- customs procedure code (CPC)
- data required for a pre-departure declaration, including:
- the name of the consignor and consignee
- a description of the goods
- routing (country by country)
- customs offices of departure and destination
Find a full list of data you need to provide in the Safety and Security requirements document.
When to submit
You or your representative must submit your exit summary declaration and obtain clearance from customs in advance before you are allowed to leave Great Britain.
The way goods are transported affects how far in advance the safety and security information must be provided before leaving UK customs control.
|How you’re shipping goods||When to submit (at the latest)|
|maritime containerised cargo||24 hours before the goods are loaded|
|short sea containerised and non-containerised cargo||2 hours before leaving the port|
|air traffic||30 minutes before departure from an airport|
|short rail journey (less than 2 hours duration)||1 hour before the goods leave the customs territory|
|long rail journey (more than 2 hours duration)||2 hours before the goods leave the customs territory|
|road and inland waters traffic||1 hour before departure|
Due to commercial practicalities, you may be required to present your goods to customs earlier.
You can amend safety and security declarations after the initial submission if certain information changes (such as the ferry company used or time of arrival), up until the point of customs clearance.
How to submit
Insert exit summary declarations
Submit using the insert exit summary (IEXS) declaration type in CHIEF if you are exporting from Great Britain to the EU or countries outside the EU by any mode of transport:
- via an inventory linked location
- other than roll on roll off (RoRo), via a non-inventory linked location.
To submit an exit summary declaration in the CHIEF system you’ll need to use:
- transaction code ‘IEXS’
- CPC 10 00 046
If using the Customs Declaration Service, you’ll need to submit a C21e dataset on the system. The procedure code is split into 2 data elements (DE) in the Customs Declaration Service, these are:
- DE 1/10
- DE 1/11
There are several 1/10 codes that can be used dependant on the procedure being used:
- 0012 – export of union goods
- 0014 – re-export of Non-union goods
- 0017 – Movements of goods from the UK to another Member State or Territory
DE 1/11 code is ‘17X’ for Safety and Security declarations.
You must read the inventory tariff to make sure that the correct codes are being applied in the declarations. The dataset for a Safety and Security declaration must include all data elements where note 56 is specified in the C21e dataset.
You can find more information in the UK Trade Tariff: volume 3 for CDS about:
- C21e Data Set available in Appendix 23c
- DE 1/10 information available in Appendix 1B
- DE 1/11 ‘17X’ information available in Appendix 2
‘Arrived’ exit summary declarations
Submit an ‘arrived’ exit summary declaration using the Export Full Declaration type in CHIEF if you are exporting from Great Britain to the EU or countries outside the EU by:
- RoRo via a port which is not inventory linked
- any mode of transport via Dover, Holyhead or Eurotunnel
Some locations do not have the physical space for customs checks to be carried out and are operating with Inland Border Facilities. For these locations, an ‘arrived’ exit summary declaration is needed.
An ‘arrived’ declaration is processed instantly, and you will be told of the outcome.
The shipment should not be moved to the border location until permission to progress is received or you are asked to do so.
To submit an ‘arrived’ exit summary declaration in the CHIEF system, you’ll need to:
- use the Export Full Declaration (EFD)
- enter the CPC 10 00 056
- declare declaration type (Box 1) as ‘EXA’
After you’ve submitted
Insert exit summary declarations
Once your exit summary declaration is accepted you’ll be issued with a movement reference number (MRN) and a DUCR if you have not created one yourself.
The exit summary declaration DUCR will need to be included in a Goods Movement Reference (GMR) if you are departing through a location which has chosen to use GVMS.
This exit summary declaration will need to be presented to the customs office of export in the UK and gain permission to progress before the goods can leave the UK.
All export declarations must be ‘arrived’ in the UK on CHIEF or Customs Declaration Service.
Input of the electronic arrival message completes presentation of the shipment so that they may be cleared for the export procedure.
Shipments must not depart, or be loaded to depart, without permission to progress granted from customs.
‘Arrived’ exit summary declarations
Once your exit summary declaration is accepted, you’ll be issued with a movement reference number (MRN) and a DUCR if you have not created one yourself.
The exit summary declaration DUCR will need to be included in a Goods Movement Reference (GMR) if you are departing through a location which has chosen to use Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS).
The declarant will be notified by CHIEF whether permission to progress has been given or whether further checks are required. You should not move to the border location until permission to progress is received, or you are asked to do so.
Once permission to progress has been received, you may proceed to the port of exit and the goods may be shipped.
All exit summary declarations will automatically be assumed as departed on CHIEF, so there is no need to submit the departure notification for exit summary declarations.