Apr 3rd, 2024
7 mins

New import controls have been introduced and further changes will come into effect from 30 April 2024. From 30 April 2024 traders must:

  • Ensure goods arrive through an appropriately designated Border Control Post (BCP) or Control Point (CP) for your commodity type
  • If called, present the consignment for documentary, physical and identification inspections at the BCP or CP

These requirements will apply to EU and non-qualifying Northern Ireland Goods entering GB from the island of Ireland no earlier than 31 October 2024, with the precise date to be confirmed.

Import notifications and customs declarations

From 30 April, HMRC/Defra systems will cross-check the CHED import notification & customs declaration for each consignment of goods subject to SPS controls imported from EU countries.

This is already in place for non-EU countries. To avoid the consignment being directed to a BCP when it may not need to attend, the CHED import notification reference and commodity codes must be consistent between the notification and the customs declaration. Follow these steps.

  • Submit the import notification using IPAFFS before your customs agent submits the customs declaration using Customs Declaration Service.
  • Use the new Copy function to copy the CHED reference and customs Doc code in the correct format for the customs declaration.
  • Send to your customs agent together with a PDF copy of the import notification. Ask them to double check the commodity codes are the same in the customs declaration. They should also check that there are no special characters in the description of goods field (Data Element 6/8).
  • Work with your customs agent to fix any errors shown on CDS or IPAFFS before the consignment reaches the port of departure, to avoid it being directed to a BCP when it may not need to attend.

Use of a scanned copy of an Export Health Certificate

For a three-month period from 30 April 2024 a temporary easement will be in place to enable the full requirements of a documentary check to be satisfied when a scanned copy of an original Export Health Certificate (EHC) or Phytosanitary certificate (PC) is provided in an importer’s prenotification. Where a scanned copy is provided, the original EHC or PC should be provided to competent authorities within five (EHC) or three (PC) business days of a consignment’s arrival.

The temporary easement will only apply to EHCs for animal products and by products from the EU and to PCs for plants and plant products from the EU, Liechtenstein and Switzerland. You should continue to adopt fully digitised certification as soon as possible to reduce the requirement to undergo in person documentary checks at the border once the three-month easement period ends.

Read more: information about Export Health Certificates

Webinars and other useful sources of information:

Sign up to webinars for traders.

These sessions will tell you all you need to know about changes to import processes from 30 April 2024 under the Border Target Operating Model. They will provide a step-by-step guide to importing to GB from EU/EFTA and will provide information on entering through a port of entry with a border control post and outline what happens once you get there.

Join the session at 10.30am on Tuesday 9th April to find out about the forthcoming changes for products of animal origin:

BTOM: Prepare for import controls from 30 April ’24 (animal products) Tickets, Tue 9 Apr 2024 at 10:30 | Eventbrite

If you’re importing plants or plant products, sign up to the webinar on 11th April:

BTOM: Prepare for the upcoming import controls from Apr’24 (plants focused) Tickets, Thu 11 Apr 2024 at 11:00 | Eventbrite

Visit the YouTube channel and watch recordings of our previous webinars for traders.

Read the summary of common errors.

Read the Frequently Asked Questions about IPAFFS and Health Certificates.

Read guidance on how to comply with your legal responsibilities for:


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