British Irish Chamber of Commerce: Imports extension ‘necessary’

The British Irish Chamber of Commerce is encouraging agri-businesses to make use of what it calls a ‘necessary’ extended grace period, to prepare for the changes to come.

In a statement welcoming the government’s announcement yesterday (Tuesday, September 14) Paul Lynam, director of Policy at the British Irish Chamber of Commerce said: “The British Irish Chamber of Commerce encourages firms within the agri-food sector to use this extended grace period to prepare.

“This pragmatic approach is necessary so that the UK Government can make the necessary preparations for full customs controls to ensure an orderly transition that does not unduly disrupt trade.

New import controls on agri-food products will now enter force from the January 1, with physical checks on Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) goods at Border Control Posts due to occur from July 2022.

“The Chamber urges the European Commission and the UK Government to use this time to streamline customs processes to ensure greater efficiency in trade with a particular focus on the need to reduce the pre-notification time period and the urgent need to introduce electronic Export Health Certificates.”

“This extension also allows businesses on both sides of the Irish Sea additional time to get ready for the new import restrictions and administrative barriers that they will soon come into force.”

Imports extension

Yesterday, the UK government announced that safety and security checks on EU produce at UK borders will now not be required until July 1, 2022.

Minister of State at the Cabinet Office, Lord Frost, said:

“We want businesses to focus on their recovery from the pandemic rather than have to deal with new requirements at the border, which is why we’ve set out a pragmatic new timetable for introducing full border controls.

Businesses will now have more time to prepare for these controls which will be phased in throughout 2022.

“The government remains on track to deliver the new systems, infrastructure and resourcing required.”