Government announces NEW £20 million SME Brexit Support Fund

The £20 million SME Brexit Support Fund, offers support to help small businesses adjust to new customs procedures, rules of origin, and VAT rules when trading with the EU.

Doing business with Europe has changed. We understand how challenging it can be to get used to the new rules and we appreciate how much you’ve done already.

We’re here to help you understand what these changes mean for you. Customers that we’ve spoken to have told us that they need more help, and we hope the following information is useful to you.

SME Brexit Support Fund

This week the government announced that small and medium-sized businesses (SME’s) can get up to £2,000 through the SME Brexit Support Fund to help with training or professional advice. The grants can be used for training on:

  • how to complete customs declarations
  • how to manage customs processes and use customs software and systems
  • specific import and export related aspects including VAT, excise and rules of origin.

The fund will be administered through the existing Customs Grant Scheme and will open for applications next month. Find out more about the support fund on GOV.UK.

This week we’re answering some commonly asked questions about:

  • using more than one customs intermediary
  • the new VAT rules for goods under £135
  • where to access HMRC help and guidance.

I regularly export goods from my factory in Great Britain to customers in the EU, can I use more than one customs intermediary?

Yes, it’s up to you to decide what works best for your business. Using a single intermediary for all movements may be cheaper and more efficient. This is because that intermediary will already have your business set up on their system, which makes repeat declarations quicker, easier and cheaper.

There may be lots of commercial reasons why using a different intermediary for specific movements might make more sense for you, this could be if your goods leave GB via different routes.

For example, you may export pieces of furniture to Spain by boat via Southampton, and you send furniture hardware to Hungary by plane via Heathrow. You might want or need to use a different intermediary for those movements, as an intermediary may only deal with goods moving through a particular port or airport and will only hold a CHIEF badge for movement of goods via that route

For more information on the SME Brexit Support Fund, click here.

Full guidance on how you can use the grant, who can apply and how to apply, click here

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