What is the Northern Ireland Protocol?
Do you move goods into, out of, or through Northern Ireland?
If the answer to the question above is yes, then you will need to be aware of the Northern Ireland Protocol.
The Northern Ireland Protocol came into force on 1 January 2021, bringing changes to the way goods move between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
If you move goods into, out of, or through Northern Ireland it is important to take the necessary actions to comply with the new rules. If you don’t take the correct actions, it may mean that you are not able to move goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
What actions do businesses need to take to comply with the Northern Ireland Protocol?
Some of the key areas you will need to consider if you move goods into, out of, or through Northern Ireland include:
Sign up to the Trader Support Service
To help you comply with the Northern Ireland Protocol you can sign up to the free Trader Support Service.
The Trader Support Service will guide you through any changes to the way goods move between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It can also complete any necessary declarations on your behalf.
You can sign up to the Trader Support Service online
Get an EORI number
EORI number is short for Economic Operators Registration and Identification number.
You will need an EORI number which begins with XI to
- move goods between Northern Ireland and non-EU countries (including Great Britain)
- make a declaration in Northern Ireland
- get a customs decision in Northern Ireland
However, in order to get an EORI number which begins with XI you must already have an EORI number which begins with GB.
You can find out more about an EORI number, who needs one and how to apply on the gov.uk website.
Find out the commodity code for when you bring goods in or send goods out of Northern Ireland
You’ll need to find the right commodity code when you bring goods in or send goods out of Northern Irelandto:
- understand any duty or other measures that apply to your goods
- fill in declarations and other paperwork.
You can find the right commodity code in one of two ways:
- search the Trade Tariff tool
- for goods you purchase, you should speak to your supplier, they may be able to tell you the code
Register for the UK Trader Scheme if you bring goods into Northern Ireland
While the UK-EU Free Trade Agreement delivers zero tariffs on imports and exports, there are some instances where duty may be due.
If you bring goods into Northern Ireland from Great Britain or a country outside of the EU, you will need to make declarations and may be liable to pay EU customs duty.
Whether you have to pay a duty, and how much that duty is, will depend on where you are bringing the goods from and whether they are ‘at risk’ of onward movement to the EU.
If you intend to bring goods into Northern Ireland which you know are not ‘at risk’ of moving to the EU, then you can apply for authorisation under the UK Trader Scheme.
Check your goods regulation
If you are placing goods on the Northern Ireland market, then you will need to check whether your goods must meet EU standards and how these goods are approved for the EU market.
When placing manufactured goods on the market in Northern Ireland you need to check whether your goods comply with EU regulations. Click here for more guidance.
Live animals, products of animal origin, plants and plant products
If you move live animals, products of animal origin, plants and plant products (agri-food goods) from Great Britain to Northern Ireland, free support, including a dedicated helpline, is available for traders and businesses from the Movement Assistance Scheme
The Movement Assistance Scheme also means that traders will not need to pay health certification costs.
At Anthony Jones we remain committed to helping our customers navigate the complexities that Brexit may bring to the way business operate. If you have any questions about how Brexit may impact your insurance or your insurance needs, then do not hesitate to get in touch with our expert teams.