Businesses Face UK Customs And Border Changes

There are more post-Brexit changes for UK importers to navigate as HMRC introduces new legislation on 31st January 2024.

All UK importers will already be aware that the document waiver code 999L is being withdrawn from the end of January. But they might not be aware of the changes for Irish exporters.

There are three main areas of change, which include:

  • Full customs controls
  • Health certification on medium risk animal products, plant products and high risk
  • Pre-notification requirements for live animals, animal products and high and medium risk category plant products

Below, we explain what traders need to do from 31st January moving forward to reflect these changes.

Trader responsibilities

From 31st January 2024, Irish exporters will have to ensure their UK importer or UK-based agent has registered with the UK Customs Declarations System and has made a customs declaration.

For hauliers, this includes the UK import declaration reference number to generate a Goods Movement Reference (GMR).

Irish exporters will also have to use the UK Goods Vehicle Management System (GVMS) to add the import declaration reference and generate a GMR before departing for ports in Ireland.

As for live animals, animal products, high and medium plant products, traders will be required to ensure their UK importer (or UK based agent) has pre-notified each consignment on the UK’s food and feed SPS import system.

Similarly, any products that require an Export Health Certificate must have one. The requirement itself being based on the UK’s new low, medium, and high-risk categorisation.

What next

This doesn’t affect everyone. There will be no requirements applying to goods moving between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

But for traders who don’t have the same access, it will pay to have some comprehensive guidance on the new legislation.

If you’re in a position where you could use some insight on the changes for Irish exporters, or just need some support with your customs processes generally, you can get in touch by emailing