Brexit Baffles Freight Forwarders

Brexit Baffles Freight Forwarders

Most freight forwarders doubt they can handle changes to the United Kingdom’s trading relationship in 2021, including new customs documentation and procedures, according to a study by the British International Freight Association. Key findings from the report reveal:

Lack of understanding: More than half of freight forwarders say they have no knowledge or need to improve their knowledge of the government’s plans for the border after the Brexit transition period.

About 70% say they understand the customs procedures required to import goods into the U.K. from the European Union after the transition regarding the Border Operating Model, but less than half say this is the case with safety and security declarations.

Regarding exports from the U.K. to the EU, 79% say they have no understanding of import procedures in individual EU member states.

Communication: Forwarders say they want more information from the government—86% need more information on import/export customs procedures, 82% on safety and security declarations, and 85% on the Smart Freight system. More than 50% say they haven’t received direct communication from the government on the EU Exit process and the end of the transition period.

Bright spot: 88% of freight forwarders say they are aware of the government’s Customs Intermediary Grant Scheme to assist with training, new technology, and recruitment costs, and 72% say they intend to or already use the scheme.

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