Union Customs Code
If you import or export goods, you need to be aware of the new Union Customs Code (UCC) which came into effect across the EU on 1 May 2016.
The most important change is the requirement to provide a financial guarantee (known as a security) to HMRC for the potential customs duty due. Businesses who hold Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) status do not have to provide that guarantee. Also under the UCC, shipments for AEO businesses are given priority clearance, so fewer customs inspections are required.
The AEO is a ‘trusted trader’ status. It already exists, but in the past not many businesses have bothered to apply. It will now be worthwhile applying for AEO status.
If you already hold AEO status that authorisation will remain in place until its expiry date, which is normally three years from the date it was granted.