Feature Article
Customs training ahead of Brexit
By Carol Lynch, Partner BDO
By Carol Lynch, Partner BDO
By Carol Lynch, Partner BDO

With the threat of Brexit looming, companies importing and exporting with the UK must ensure that they are informed about customs procedures. In order to continue trading with the UK, companies must be approved as Authorise Economic Operators /Trusted Traders.

Most companies who are facing importing to and exporting from the UK have limited knowledge of customs procedures. Many companies over the last twenty five years have operated within the Single Market which has removed the requirement to understand how to complete customs forms.


Along with this, in order to move goods with the minimum customs requirements possible, companies are going to have to look to get approved as Authorised Economic Operators (AEOs) or Trusted Traders as this is often referred to.


One of the recently introduced conditions for AEO status is that the applicant, or the person in charge of their customs affairs must have customs knowledge and training.


For example;

a. They must have 3 years’ experience as a guide


b. They must have Professional qualifications, undertake training and have passed an examination, consistent with the extent of their involvement in customs activities.


With a short time frame now left the answer is simply to prepare your business to ensure you are able to import and export from a Non-EU Country. Things which can and must be done at a minimum are:

1.       Ensure your tariff classifications are 100% correct

2.       Ensure you have a clearance agent to lodge Customs Declarations on your behalf

3.       Prepare an application to obtain a Deferred Payment Account, discuss and agree a guarantee provision with your bank, and have the application ready to lodge by end of the year if no-deal has been agreed.


There are no real costs to 2&3 and 1- Classification – is a requirement regardless of when the UK ultimately leave and is consequently work which will ultimately be required. Therefore in terms of investing management time at this point, we would strongly recommend that businesses who are now seriously looking at preparing for the possibility of a Hard Brexit for the first time, start working on ensuring they have all UK imports and exports assigned a Tariff Code as a matter of urgency.


At BDO we are offering access to bespoke customs training for our clients.  The essential features of our training involves

  1. Completing Import and Export Documentation
  2. How the clearance system works
  3. Information required by Revenue
  4. SAD auditing
  5. Classification of goods and application of tariffs
  6. Understanding Trade Agreements (particularly in the event of a new UK-EU Agreement)
  7. Qualifying for reduced rates under Trade Agreements
  8. Dealing with Customers and Suppliers
  9. Understanding the movement of goods whether by Road, Sea or Air
  10. Developing Customs Reports
  11. Understanding Duty Saving Opportunities

For further information on Brexit and all customs queries please contact BDO.



Registration opens on 1 May for our first course to take place over the Summer.


For further information contact:

Carol Lynch




Direct: +353 1 470 0491


Beaux Lane House

Mercer Street Lower

Dublin 2

Tel: +353 1 470 0000

Fax: +353 1 477 0000




About Carol Lynch

Carol is a Partner at BDO Customs and International Trade Services. Carol has more than 25 years’ experience in customs and international trade.


Carol is currently heavily involved in advising clients on the impact of Brexit and is working with a number of high profile companies in this regard.

She has been requested to present to the Oireachtas Finance Committee on the impact of Brexit for traders in Ireland and also presents on behalf of Chambers Ireland and InterTrade Ireland. She is part of a number of working groups including that of the British Irish Chambers of Commerce and the Revenue Commissioners. She contributes to various media (print and radio) with regard to the Customs issues which may arise post Brexit.


Carol has significant expertise in customs, excise, export controls, anti-dumping, audits and investigations. She also has significant experience working with clients in the aviation and aircraft leasing, food and drink, pharmaceutical companies, consumer electronics and software sectors along with general manufacturing.

More News
Join our Annual Trade Mission to Hong Kong (13th- 18th January)

We are pleased to announce that Brendan Foster, Chairman of Ireland Hong Kong Business Forum and Mary Rose Burke, CEO of Dublin Chamber will lead our annual mission to Hong Kong, Shenzhen and Macau from 13-18 January 2019.


SME funding opportunities /500euro


In relation to supporting Irish business for the Hong Kong event in January, we are happy to announce Dublin City Council assistance through the LEO Technical Assistance for Micro Exporters (TAME) This would offer a grant of up to €500 to support international delegations for SME's < 10 employees.

The Ireland Hong Kong Business Forum is pleased to announce expressions of interest for the annual mission to Hong Kong (January 2019) as now open. This year marks the first time a direct flight from Dublin to Hong Kong is in operation, which makes the prospect of long-distance travelling less daunting for delegates. Increased connectivity between Hong Kong and Ireland will mean the opportunities that exist in Hong Kong, the Pearl River Basin and indeed in Asia are set to increase exponentially.  Last year, 22 representatives from Irish companies and semi-state bodies travelled to Hong Kong on this mission which included high-level networking events organised by and one-to-one meetings with companies based in Hong Kong. As part of the mission, Hong Kong Trade and Development Council (HKTDC) provided dedicated advisory services and tailored B2B matchmaking services. Delegates were also given the option of a day trip to visit either Shenzhen or Macau, depending on their sector of interest. 


SME funding opportunities /500euro


In relation to supporting Irish business for the Hong Kong event in January, we are happy to announce Dublin City Council assistance through the LEO Technical Assistance for Micro Exporters (TAME) This would offer a grant of up to €500 to support international delegations. However, it will only apply to business with less than 10 employees.  


Contact valentina@dublinchamber.ie to reserve your place. 


Mission highlights:

  • Market briefing roundtable on Hong Kong Market
  • Sector specifics seminars ( Smart tech, ICT, Finance, Fintech; Tourism, Food & Bev)
  • Site visits to local companies including Crown Worldwide Group and Cyberport
  • Assistance setting up targeted meetings with potential partners
  • Networking reception at Consulate of Ireland with Irish Minister & Consul General of Ireland to Hong Kong
  • Day trip and market briefing in Macau for those operating in Food & Bev and Tourism sectors to hear about opportunities there, followed by networking lunch with key local contacts
  • Day trip to Shenzhen for those operating in ICT & Fintech sectors, including planned visits to Huawei, Tencent
  • Admission to the Asian Financial Forum (usual ticket cost $1300 (first come, first served basis)  

Mission cost: €700 including all above elements, two dinner and two  lunches

Discover Hong Kong Business Opportunities - 10th November
Hong Kong Asia’s World City

A powerful combination of factors – prime location, high-speed communications, free flow of information, unrestricted capital flows and the world’s freest economy – has made Hong Kong a leading international business and financial centre.

Hong Kong ranks high in the world’s leading surveys on best business cities, economic freedom, competitiveness, opportunity and ease of doing business. 
This briefing will present on topics including individual experiences in Hong Kong and wider Asian markets, best practice methods, common challenges and market entry strategies. Daisy Ip of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC) will be in Dublin Chamber on December 10th to meet Irish companies interested in business opportunities in Hong Kong and China. She will help identity suitable suppliers, buyers and potential business partners in Hong Kong using HKTDC database of over 100,000 Hong Kong companies. Register below for a one-to-one meeting, which will be provided on a free of charge, personalised and confidential basis. This event is hosted by Hong Kong Trade Development Council, Ireland Hong Kong Business Council and Dublin Chamber. 

Why should you attend?

  • Hear about opportunities for Irish companies in the Chinese market
  • Learn about best practice for doing business with Hong Kong
  • Hear from experts with first-hand experience

Reasons Why You Should Be Doing Business in Hong Kong

  • Easy Business Set-up for Foreign Business Owners and Entrepreneurs
  • A Free Economy
  • Solid Infrastructure Facility Protects Businesses to Develop Efficient Business Operation
  • A Fair and Transparent Legal System
  • A Simple Tax System That Permits Maximum Earnings and Minimum Costs

10.30am Registration and Networking
11.00am Welcome by Brendan Foster, Chairperson of the Irish Hong Kong Business Forum
11.10am Daisy Ip, Marketing Manager of Hong Kong Trade Development Council (HKTDC)
11.30am IPR Hong Kong awareness
11.50am Susan Hayes, CEO of Hayes Culleton Group
11.50am Q&A session
12.30pm IPR One-to-one consultations & Networking lunch
2.00pm Events end
2.00pm HKTDC One to One consultations


To register for the event click here.
IPR consultations are open from 12.300
HKTDC Consultations are open from 2.00pm

For consultations, please contact Valentina: valentina@dublinchamber.ie

Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs

Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs is a cross-border exchange programme which gives new or aspiring entrepreneurs the chance to learn from experienced entrepreneurs running small businesses in other Participating Countries.

Dublin Chamber is the intermediary organisation for Ireland working with host entrepreneurs in Ireland and new entrepreneurs across Europe.


As a host entrepreneur participating in the programme, you will benefit from the exchange by having the opportunity to:

  • Learn about foreign markets, expand your business opportunities and engage in cross-border activities;
  • Network and build strong relationships, which can be useful for mutual consulting, business referrals, and for finding business partners abroad;
  • Improve your language skills;


As a new entrepreneur participating in the programme, you will benefit from the exchange by having the opportunity to:

  • Learn from an experienced entrepreneur about successfully running a company, while strengthening sector-specific skills;
  • Discover potential cooperation opportunities;
  • Improve your language skills;

For more information on the programme please contact: maria@dublinchamber.ie

Dublin Chamber at StartUp Ballymun 2018

Dublin Chamber took part in the event that was aimed at owners of startups, early stage and established businesses as an advisory partner for the Enterprise Europe Network.  

The Enterprise Europe Network at Dublin Chamber offers support and advice to SMEs in Leinster, helping you to make the most of business opportunities beyond Irish and European Union borders.

Our services include a free international partner sourcing service, advice on new markets, advice on access to finance & funding, advice on EU legislation, and networking opportunities with international trade missions.


More than 150 international Market Advisors from Enterprise Ireland’s 33 overseas offices will be in Ireland to participate in over 2,100 meetings, advising Irish companies on global export opportunities and how to diversify into new markets in response to Brexit.


Helping Irish businesses diversify into new markets is a key Brexit response and one of the ways Enterprise Ireland is helping exporters increase their global footprint. According to the results of the Enterprise Ireland survey of companies attending International Markets Week, more than four out of five (84%) plan to diversify into new international markets, while almost one in three (32%) will continue to expand into the UK.


For more information click here.

EEN - Enterprise Europe Network
EEN Logo

If you are ready to take your business to the next step and grow internationally. The Enterprise Europe Network is ready to help you. The Enterprise Europe Network helps companies to innovate and grow internationally.

Looking for European partners for your business? To see a list of companies looking for Irish partners now available here.

If you want to join the programme or for further information please contact us.

Looking to export?

The Export & Consular department based in Dublin Chamber are experts when it comes to helping companies to get goods shipped abroad, to register products in export markets and to visit export customers.

Dublin Chamber’s experienced staff organise the legalisation of documents for international trade, legal or commercial requirements and inter-country adoptions. Our couriers go on a daily basis to the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Supreme Court, the Joint Arab Irish Chamber of Commerce and any necessary Embassy in Dublin as well as to London based Embassies and the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office to ensure that your documents have all the necessary stamps and seals for full compliance to international regulations. We also offer advice on the requirements for each country. Our fast and efficient service ensures prompt processing of your vital documents.



The Export & Consular offers a wide range of services including:

•             Certificates of origin issued and stamped

•             Certification of export documentation

•             ATA Carnets, for the temporary export of goods, issued,

•             Legalisation of export and regulatory documentation,

•             Visas for your business travel needs.



Export Services – We make getting goods shipped broad easy.


For further information on any of the above services please contact:

Richard Brown (01 644 7204 / richard@dublinchamber.ie)

Aleksandra Balcerzak (01 644 7205 / aleksandra@dublinchamber.ie)