Customs clearance plays an integral part of the supply chain, but this process can be lengthy and time-consuming if proper protocols and requirements are not in place. The EU took measures to modernize and streamline some of the processes for clearance when the Union Customs Code (UCC) went into effect in 2016. One major aspect of the UCC is the option for shippers to utilize Centralised Clearance by 2020. Through this simplification, the declarant is allowed to lodge a customs declaration at the customs office where the business is established, regardless of which customs office the goods are physically presented into the EU.
Centralised clearance will present advantages to shippers, but there are certain preparations and measures that have to be taken in order to reap the benefits of this process change. At BDP’s Supply Chain Summit in Antwerp last week, our team polled the audience on how UCC and Centralised Clearance could not only affect their supply chains but how prepared their businesses are to implement the potential changes. The audience consisted of European importers and exporters from the chemical, digital imaging, retail, and hunting materials industries.
With over 175 people in the audience, we found:
62% of participants stated that they are working on the development of centralizing their imports
Over 75% stated that they believe the benefits of centralized clearance deliver cost savings to the supply chain
These results show that companies in the EU see the benefits that Centralised Clearance delivers and are taking action to begin preparing for this process change.
In March 2018, the European Commission proposed that customs authorities and economic operators to be allowed to continue using the existing systems for a specific number of customs formalities until 2025. Although this extension has been presented, we polled the audience for their level of preparedness and the path forward.
67 percent of polled shippers plan to implement the necessary internal updates to participate in Centralised Clearance by 2020, and 24 percent by 2025
These results indicate the level of the importance shippers place on preparations, as the majority plan to invest in the strategies needed to execute implementation by the originally proposed date of 2020.
The management of global data and trade transactions represents a vital function for EU businesses that import goods. Keeping pace with an ever-changing global trade regulatory landscape, successful businesses require strong and flexible global trade processes that meet today’s new world or the “Amazonization” of everything.
Re-engineered business processes that change and deliver new solutions are essential to the financial, operational, and reputational well-being of companies engaged in the movement of goods and intangibles across borders. This step towards modernization with customs processes will further allow the EU to operate as a unified entity rather than single member-states while streamlining the clearance process. By implementing this change, the EU is keeping pace with many of the other developed countries across the globe.
BDP will be at the forefront of any new developments and will keep you apprised of any pertinent changes or opportunities to participate in additional polling, so stay tuned.
Should you have any questions or concerns, please reach out BDP’s European Compliance Team.