Brexit Bulletin - 19 July 2021



International trade relations and policy priorities have been a key focus over the last week.


International Trade Secretary Liz Truss travelled to the US to meet her US counterpart, Trade Representative Katherine Tai, to discuss closer cooperation on tackling threats to free and fair global trade. The meeting focused on working together to tackle unfair trade practices, making progress on cooperation on large civil aircraft and boosting the two countries’ £196bn trading relationship. The visit followed the UK’s signing of a free trade deal with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein, more details of which are below.


In developments related to international travel ADS is continuing to monitor the latest updates on restrictions and guidance for European travel. Ahead of England moving to step four on the road map today,  the Government set out details that enable people who have been fully vaccinated with an NHS administered vaccine, plus 14 days, to travel to amber list countries (including many European destinations) without having to quarantine on their return to England from today (19 July).


The Government has also updated guidance on travelling for business to the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein. There is still more to do to enable a full return to international travel and ADS is working to make sure Government understands the need to continue to cut the cost of tests for passengers and reopen key travel routes, including to the United States.





ADS is bringing members a mini-series of two webinars as part of our Managing Brexit collection, where we will be joined by experts from the Department for International Trade (DIT).


The first event will be held on Tuesday 27 July at 14:00 provides an overview of Free Trade Agreements (FTAs), answering questions such as:

  • What do FTAs do?
  • What chapters are typically found in an FTA?
  • How do FTAs complement WTO agreements?


This session will also highlight key policy areas of FTAs for our sectors, such as digital policy, intellectual property, and customs, through a case study on Japan.



This session held on Thursday 29 July at 14:00 will focus on ways members can engage with the DIT on policy issues going forward. Members will also be introduced to the Department’s wider policy interests including, procurement, innovation, and investment.


Both events will feature the usual Q&A section so members can ask experts any questions you may have, please feel free to send in your questions to in advance of the event to ensure they will be addressed.


You can find out more information and sign up for the events using the buttons below:


Part One - Free Trade Agreements
27 July | 14:00

Part Two - Engaging with DIT
29 July | 14:00






As businesses navigate the new relationship between the UK and EU, there may be issues and new experiences facing members, ADS are keen to hear from members via the dedicated  email address on all your experiences including:

  • Ease or challenges related to moving goods from GB to EU from 1 January 2021
  • Experiences with Customs Agents
  • Experiences with new customs systems
  • Ease or challenges related to moving goods in and out of NI from 1 January 2021
  • Concerns with regards to regulation or certification of your goods and products





Apply for the Pilot Recognition Arrangements Grant Programme


The Government recently published details of its pilot funding programme designed to support regulatory and professional bodies across the UK. This will help the Professional and Business Services sector to negotiate arrangements to facilitate the mutual recognition of professional qualifications with their international counterparts. These arrangements can make it easier for regulated professionals to provide services internationally, outside the jurisdiction in which they qualified, and for domestic business to recruit professionals within the UK.





Northern Ireland Update


Cabinet Office Minister, Lord Frost, has had a busy couple of weeks. He appeared in person at Stormont's Executive Office committee on Friday 9 July and in front of a Lords sub-committee last week, as well as meeting with business representatives. Over the course of these engagements, Lord Frost has reiterated several times that the Government is preparing to publish its plans for the future of the Northern Ireland Protocol before Parliament rises for the summer recess this week.


Business and Ministers continue to discuss the impacts and effects of the Protocol, with Lord Frost admitting the Government had underestimated the chilling effect of the Protocol’s new rules on GB-based firms’ willingness to move goods to Northern Ireland. Similarly, Manufacturing NI told the NI Affairs Committee that the interaction of the Protocol with the TCA is having unintended consequences for businesses moving EU goods into Northern Ireland. ADS continue to work closely with companies in Northern Ireland and with officials to ensure that impacts experienced by members are being communicated to Government.





UK Trade Policy Update


On Thursday 8 July, the UK signed its free trade agreement with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein. The Government outlined that sectors such as digital, financial, and professional business services will benefit The Government has also highlighted the deal’s comprehensive mobility compared to other UK FTAs to date. Further details on the agreement are available on





Customs and Border Update


Operation Brock


Ahead of easing COVID restrictions this week, Kent will see the return of Operation Brock as traffic flow, especially international travel is expected to increase. Operation Brock is the traffic management system in Kent which was created to ease potential Brexit traffic. ADS has previously detailed the full operation details on our blog page.


Goods arriving in Great Britain without a Customs Declaration


Goods arriving in Great Britain without an import declaration would be considered noncompliant and as it stands this means penalties could be imposed by HMRC. As it is not legally possible for a retrospective declaration to be made, businesses (or customs agents) have two options to fix this:


  1. Firstly, submit a full import declaration for the free-circulation procedure as soon as possible. If a full declaration cannot be submitted, then there is an option 2.  
  2. Option 2: submit a supplementary declaration to HMRC as soon as possible showing the correct date of import.


Goods which are imported non compliantly are not able to benefit from postponed VAT accounting and will need to pay import VAT when the non-statutory declaration is submitted. Further information is available with guidance on





HMRC is providing a range of support to customs and international trade customers. ADS has collated a series of slide packs provided by government as part of our useful resources page on the ADS Brexit hub and also has a page dedicated to webinars and videos for organisations that trade with the EU.


Customs & International Trade Helpline – 0300 322 9434

The helpline is the main route in for customers with general customs queries. Capacity has been scaled up following the end of the transition period.

  • For GVMS – (details to be published online soon)






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