The presentation of the government’s budget before Parliament has always been an interesting affair. The perfunctory annual photo of the Chancellor of the Exchequer standing in front of Number 11 Downing Street with the red briefcase containing the Government’s budget for the year always seems to make a dull affair more interesting.
However, for those of us in the trade community that are in the midst of continually scanning news articles to understand the most recent state of play with Brexit, there was an interesting kernel in this year’s budget; mention of decreased processing times in the UK for Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) applications.
In the “Global Britain” section of the document, the budget states that “Businesses will be able to become customs trusted traders (including ‘Authorised Economic Operator’) in half the time it currently takes, as part of the UK’s aim to be at the cutting edge of global customs administration. HM Revenue and Customs will implement the improvements within 2 years.” This is mentioned as a way to “enhance the UK border experience”.
In practicality, this means that an application process that now takes 120-150 days to complete will, within two years, take 60-75 days.
Traders can understand three implications of this statement:
- Authorised Economic Operator status is here to stay in the UK post-Brexit.
- The UK government sees Authorised Economic Operator as a facilitation program that will increase the efficiency of goods moving across borders.
- If you are not Authorised Economic Operator licensed now – get Authorised Economic Operator licensed.
If you are embarking down the road of becoming Authorised Economic Operator, and need some support understanding the requirements, benefits, and implications, don't hesitate to reach out to us. Let us handle the details.