Although the UK has left the EU, operators will still be able to move goods between Ireland and other EU countries by road through Great Britain (the UK Landbridge). However, since 1 January 2021, a range of new steps must be completed.
Depending on the model used by operators (for example, in-house or via a customs agent), there is flexibility as to who completes some of the necessary steps.
It is therefore vital that all those involved in the transit chain (traders, logistics companies, customs agents, hauliers) understand and agree in advance who is responsible for each of the steps along the route.
Failing to clarify this will disrupt your trade and lead to possibly severe delays, including being refused permission to enter ports or board ships.
Image: Seven things you need to take on board
The seven steps in full
Decide if the customs and other work will be carried out in-house or if a logistics companyand/or customs agent will be engaged. Communication with transport provider is also recommended.
Visit Revenue for further details on the Customs Transit Procedure, the NCTS and to apply to use transit simplifications, including how to become an authorised consignor/consignee.
Work with your bank or a customs agents/logistics provider to ensure you have the necessary comprehensive financial guarantee in place.
Direct route options for the movement of goods from Ireland to the Continent are available, thus avoiding potential delays and the new procedures associated with using the UK Landbridge. Further information on direct routes between Ireland and Continental Europe is here.
In order to avail of the flexibilities provided for EU-EU transits, vehicles should only contain Union goods, that is, goods that are in free circulation in the EU. Where operators consolidate loads in Great Britain, separate processes to the ones described below apply – in effect, these full consignments will be considered imports into the EU and non-Union goods, that is Great Britain goods, will be subject to import procedures, checks and controls at the point of import to the EU rather than transit procedures meaning the vehicle will have to stop on re-entry to the EU.