Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue has urged agribusinesses and traders to register with Revenue ahead of the UK leaving the EU on 1 January 2021.
He has advised that all agri food businesses should immediately take the practical steps necessary to prepare for the changes that Brexit will bring from 1 January 2021, regardless of the outcome of EU-UK future relationship negotiations.
“In five weeks, the UK will be outside the EU's single market and customs union,” the Minister said, adding that from 1 January customs and regulatory requirements will apply to businesses that trade with and through Britain and these will result in additional delays and costs compared with trade today.
“Businesses need to be ready for this new reality and engage with my Department so that you are as prepared as possible for 1 January,” he said.
At a stakeholder meeting on Brexit on Wednesday, the Department of Foreign Affairs gave an update on the state of play in the EU-UK negotiations.
The Revenue Commissioners provided an update on EORI registrations and authorisations, including in relation to the need for financial guarantees for transits on the landbridge if operators don’t switch to direct routes to the continent.
Minister McConalogue said that he is concerned that there still appears to be a significant number of companies across the agri food, forestry and fisheries sector, including food and beverage manufacturers as well as wholesale and retail trade who traded with the UK in 2019 and 2020, that have not yet taken the first step of registering with Revenue for an EORI number.
He said without this first step, these companies will not be able to trade with Britain in five weeks’ time.
The Department has outlined the key messages it wants agribusinesses to know ahead of Brexit:Regardless of the outcome of the EU-UK negotiations, from 1 January 2021, any business which moves animals, plants, animal products or plant products from, to or through Britain will be subject to a range of new customs formalities and other regulatory requirements.It is essential that businesses take steps to understand the impacts that these new rules or processes will have on their operations. Businesses should urgently familiarise themselves with the new regulatory and customs procedures, and the certificates and documentation required to continue trading with and through Britain. Businesses are asked to ensure the operator responsible for the consignment is registered with the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine through the online registration portal on www.gov.ie/agriculture and that businesses have the necessary access to the Department’s online import and export platforms and the EU TRACES system.Businesses are also encouraged to talk to their suppliers, logistics agents and customers to ensure that everyone in the supply chain knows their role and responsibilities. Wood packaging material (WPM), including pallets, used to move goods will need to meet the ISPM 15 standard, a phytosanitary standard developed by the International Plant Protection Convention. Traders with the UK (importers and exporters) will need to ensure the WPM they use in their supply chain is compliant with ISPM 15 from 1 January 2021.Consider moving, in advance of the end of the transition period, to direct route options for the movement of goods from Ireland to the continent to avoid potential delays and the new procedures associated with using the UK landbridge. Businesses should act now to avoid significant delays and minimise disruption to their business - go to www.gov.ie/agriculture to register, access supports and get all the information they need.For assistance in preparing your business for these changes, contact the Department through their dedicated call centre, 076-106 4443 or email Brexitcall@agriculture.gov.ie
Down to Agribusiness podcast: PGI row and COVID impact on baby formula
Ireland can’t be ‘outmanoeuvred’ on Brexit fund - IFA