BIFA shares Parliament’s concerns over U.K.’s post-Brexit customs plan

Aftrer the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee published a report critical of the government’s plans for customs procedures upon completion of the U.K.’s separation from the European Union, the British International Freight Association (BIFA) released a statement saying it agree with the report, adding that more needs to be done to address the uncertainty traders have expressed over customs delarations.

Robert Keen, director general of BIFA, called the customs confusion one of the gravest “Brexit” concerns of the trade association representing the nation’s freight forwarders.

“There needs to be wider engagement with all who are engaged in processing international trade to give them as much time as possible to prepare and to allay fears,” Keen said yesterday in a BIFA statement. “We agree that our members and the trading companies that they serve need better and more regular information about the development of the Customs Declaration Service, which is scheduled to replace the current  Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight system.”

BIFA shares the committee’s concern that Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs department “does not yet have the necessary funding and resources to produce the infrastructure that will be required to facilitate customs processes post-Brexit.”

Keen urged the government to put in place a new customs system that addresses forwarders’ concerns before the Brexit is scheduled to take place, in March 2019. “Any failure in the new customs system would most likely lead to huge disruption for businesses, with significant delays at ports and airports of entry,” he said.

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