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Tech expert advises businesses to prepare ahead of latest HMRC import/export service extension

November 8, 2023 kgreenwood

Tech expert advises businesses to prepare ahead of latest HMRC import/export service extension

A technology expert has endorsed the recent deadline extension announced by HMRC for its new import/export Customs Declaration Service (CDS), saying the decision has been “welcomed throughout the industry”.

HMRC recently announced that CDS, which is the replacement declaration service for CHIEF, used when moving goods into and out of the UK, will now become the UK’s single customs platform from 30 March 2024.

John Varley, Product Specialist at Forward Solutions, says that the latest deadline extension, the third since the switch to the new service was first announced back in August 2021, is a positive move for businesses within the sector: “The situation has changed a lot since CDS’ initial deadline was set for November 2022.

“Right now, the finer points of inventory controlled exports have not been fully resolved between HMRC and the Community Service Providers (CSPs). The primary reason for the delay is due to issues with inventory linked exports (ILEs), which has ultimately led to the March 2024 revised deadline.

“The industry has largely welcomed this extension, as the issues relating to imports and that earlier deadline, should not be repeated for exports. The extension will allow remaining points to be resolved in a calm manner. It’s a pragmatic decision and one that all parties are happy with.”

Forward Solutions has been preparing its customers for the impending deadline, and many are already prepared for this new element of CDS.

John added: “CDS is already being used by lots of businesses to transmit exports that are non-inventory linked, or Goods Vehicle Movement Services (GVMS) related shipments. This has been the case for several months, with some of our traders taking part in the HMRC pilot programme.

“This has been very successful, and we have come across a few minor issues, as one would expect, which have been quickly resolved – it has been a relatively painless process so far.

“We are hoping this experience will give the rest of the service the best chance of operating as smoothly as possible come March 2024.”

John, however, does have a word of warning for traders, in relation to the migration to CDS exports: “Even though there is an extension, businesses should not use that as an excuse to delay their own implementation of the necessary upgrades and training of staff, where required.

“By getting ahead of the game with this deadline, companies can position themselves well to fully make use of the new service.”


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