Connected Customs: the benefits of end-to-end customs clearance

Lines of Connectivity

Are you an importer or exporter? Does your movement use the GVMS system, a T1 form, or maybe you are dealing with continuously ambiguous circumstances for trading between two countries – such as between the UK and the Republic of Ireland? Having a customs agent that looks after your declarations at both origin and destination saves you hassle. Here is how you can benefit from end-to-end customs clearance services:

Connecting both ends of the process

Have you ever struggled with getting documents for customs clearance in time, or had to relay queries between the supplier/buyer/agent so that clearance can be completed?

Using end-to-end customs clearance agents removes that inefficiency for you. Once the documents are received from the supplier, they will be checked by the export agent to ensure they meet all requirements. If there are no queries, clearance will be completed and all documents will be sent to the import clearance agent.

If your agents are using a digital customs clearance process, then your import declaration will be ready to process before the shipment has even left origin. This allows secondary checks, and any import-specific information that could be missing – such as an import licence number – to be ascertained well ahead of arrival.

If there is a secondary step to the export customs clearance, like a T1 form or GMR, then this will also be provided to your import agent so that there is no omission or need for you to get involved to query, this will be managed between partnering end-to-end customs clearance agents.

Connected Intel

The confusion that set in at the beginning of Brexit customs clearance requirements caused chaos in January 2021, which repeated in January 2022 with the real Brexit, and was due to repeat with the additional EU import controls that were due in July.

The reason? Miscommunication – or an omission of communication – between customs agents, buyers, sellers, and everyone else in-between. As customs agents, we heard from new clients how exporters on both sides were unaware of the documentation/information requirements for border declarations, leading to costly delays – particularly for commodities like fish that suddenly required a catch certificate, where every hour lost affected the value of the load.

As end-to-end customs clearance partners, we are able to mitigate this on both sides.

If a new requirement is needed on your import – such as a Unique Notification Number (UNN) on your original health certificate, then your import agent can inform your export agent, who can inform your seller, well ahead of arrival or even shipment – saving you time and money for delays at the import border.

INCOTERMS don’t affect the use of partnering agents

INCOTERMS dictate who is responsible for clearances fees at both ends of your supply chain, which means your buyer/seller might already use someone else. However, they also benefit from an arrangement with an end-to-end customs clearance provider. And as your trading partner, it is worth streamlining the process and taking the hassle off of both of your businesses. We can invoice whomever you need us to.

Get in touch

Although Brexit customs clearance have mostly stabilised – following the cancellation of additional EU import controls that were due in July – customs regulations when trading between Ireland, Northern Ireland, and the United Kingdom remain uncertain. If you’d like to hear more about how we provide end-to-end customs clearance services in the UK and Ireland contact us for more information.