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 post Brexit will 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.




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.

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