Last month the UK Government announced its plans for a significant new approach to importing goods into Great Britain via the Border Target Operating Model (BTOM).
BTOM will be gradually rolled out from January 2024, and will affect borders procedures for incoming food, animal and plant products. However, a report from IOE&IT’s finds that BTOM is just the beginning, with 23 major legislative and policy changes set to affect businesses either directly or through their supply chains, delivery partners or freight forwarders.
The next 15 months will see a raft of policy changes that will impact all British firms who trade internationally between now and the end of 2024. This makes the period even busier than 2021, when the EU began applying full customs requirement and checks on UK exports.
Within the next few months alone, we’ll see the fifth release of the New Computerised Transit System, the rollout of the Electronic Trade Documents Act, and the EU Import Control System 2, as well as multiple updates to the documentation, risk-based checks and health certification checks on specific products.
Marco Forgione, director general of IOE&IT aacknowledges that such significant change will be daunting to any business and that a “bedding in period” will, naturally, follow. However, the Institute believes the added benefits will be immense, with the digitisation of UK trade having the potential to add £25bn to the country’s GDP.
“The UK’s international trade community is on the launchpad of great change. Such a raft of new measures in so short a period of time is almost unheard of,” said Forgione.
But that potential cannot be realised without certainty and support from policymakers – and that must start now.
Armed with its findings, the IOE&IT will be attending the upcoming Party Conferences with the clear message that the business community needs support, education and clarity.
Forgione added: “My message to our leaders at Party Conferences this season is clear, 2024 is going to see profound change in how we trade with the rest of the world. We can longer take for granted that businesses are fully aware of all the changes coming into force. It is essential there are no more delays and that we work together to give our business community the best chance to succeed. We have a golden opportunity here for British business to flourish – but they can only reap the rewards of efficient new border systems and trade deals if they are armed with the right skills and knowledge in plenty of time.”
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