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Customs and Excise

Customs and excise rules are complex, globally varied and always changing.

It can be difficult complying with the many different international trade regulations, especially when in-house expertise is in short supply.

If your business is looking for growth overseas by importing and exporting, it will face customs duty. The amount you pay depends on the exact nature and value of the goods being imported, the country of origin, and any available relief. However, you'll need to know you've paid the right duty in the right location, and to stay competitive, consider how your selling prices reflect these costs. At Grant Thornton, we're here to help.

Helping you save money legally within the law

You'll work with an expert team that helps you save significant duty through approved reliefs and facilitation measures, such as customs warehousing, inward processing and returned goods relief. We can also ensure you avoid relying on freight forwarders to declare on your behalf, as the company is responsible for paying the right amount. It's worth knowing that HMRC can go back up to three years to collect underpaid duties.

Our team can help you comply before you import or export, making sure you're staying competitive and paying the right amount of duty. You'll find our experience working in UK Customs invaluable, especially as we can help you avoid costly mistakes.

Meeting your international trade obligations

We'll help you meet the requirements of the Union Customs Code (UCC), new customs legislation set to replace outdated European rules in May 2016. The UCC requires businesses to provide financial guarantees to cover potential duty arising from importing.

We can also help you become an Authorised Economic Operator (AEO). This is a trusted trader status awarded to businesses that can secure their part of the supply chain. Gaining an AEO accreditation entitles your business to guarantee waivers introduced by the UCC.

Without AEO status, you'll need to factor guarantee costs into budgets. Additionally, over 90 countries now have AEO programmes. A growing number of agreements between these countries will make it easier for UK businesses with an AEO to trade internationally. 

Our services

You'll receive support for all customs and excise matters, including:

  • customs duty relief
  • excise duty management
  • broker management
  • AEO status.
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