July 13, 2020 / 4:02 PM / 22 days ago

Factbox: With a post-Brexit border operation model, Britain tells firms to get ready

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain unveiled its new post-Brexit border operating model on Monday, setting out what traders will need to do when a status quo transition arrangement with the European Union finishes at the end of this year.

FILE PHOTO: European Union and British flags flutter in front of a chancellery ahead of a visit of British Prime Minister Theresa May in Berlin, Germany, April 9, 2019. REUTERS/Hannibal Hanschke

Last month, the government said it would introduce border checks with the EU in three stages from Jan. 1, reversing an original plan so it could give companies struggling with the coronavirus crisis more time to fill out forms and pay tariffs.

Some business groups are concerned that many businesses will not be ready for the changes on Dec. 31 when Britain leaves the EU’s single market and customs union, but the government says its awareness campaign should give them enough notice.

If businesses are not prepared, this could mean increased congestion on some roads, particularly in Kent, home to the port of Dover, Britain’s busiest roll-on roll-off port.

Following is some of the guidance set out in the border operating model, which does not include measures for Northern Ireland:

INVESTMENT

- The government will invest 705 million pounds for new infrastructure, jobs and technology to ensure British border systems are fully operational. This will include 470 million pounds to build infrastructure such as border control posts, and 235 million for IT systems and more border force workers.

Britain has said infrastructure will be needed at some ports and where they do not have space, the government will build inland infrastructure to meet the new requirements.

GUIDANCE FOR TRADERS

- Get a customs intermediary to help find the information needed to complete formalities and submit the required declarations.

- Apply for a duty deferment account for traders who import goods regularly. This enables customs charges including customs duty, excise duty, and import VAT to be paid once a month through Direct Debit instead of being paid on individual consignments.

- Prepare to pay or account for VAT on imported goods.

- Ensure you have international driving permits.

- Apply for a GB Economic Operator Registration and Identification number.

Reporting by Elizabeth Piper, Editing by William Maclean

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