Published: 06:10, 25 November 2020
| Updated: 07:02, 25 November 2020
With fewer than eight weeks to go until the transition period with the EU ends, HMRC is urging thousands of traders across Kent to act now to avoid disruption to their business.
As a major hub for international goods movement, Kent will be a focal point come January 1 2021, and many businesses are already preparing for transition and getting ready to grasp the opportunities it will offer.
Katherine Green and Sophie Dean, Directors General, Borders and Trade, HMRC, said time is of the essence: “We understand that these are unprecedented and challenging times, but taking action now is critical.
“New customs and tax rules will still apply if a Free Trade Agreement is negotiated, so businesses need to get ready for the changes ahead.”
Some customs processes will be new to some businesses, so they are being urged to act now.
Three key actions are...
One Kent business which has been working hard to prepare for January is Davies Turner.
Dartford-based Davies Turner is one of the largest international freight forwarders in the UK, employing almost 1,000 people and moving goods across the world for importers and exporters.
Director Alan Williams said: “We make that process happen, and that includes advice on customs procedures, both going out, and also at country of destination.
“We’ve been preparing for leaving the EU since 2016. We have upscaled our business practices, we’re ready and we are already moving to the next scale to make this work.”
Alan said his main piece of advice to businesses concerned about preparations, would be to contact a customs specialist now.
“People are getting ready. It’s a real process, so we must act quickly. Businesses in the UK should call their local freight forwarder, we are here to help.”
For more help and advice on preparing for January 1, visit www.gov.uk/transition