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In principle, the United Kingdom (hereinafter UK) will leave the European Union (hereinafter EU) on 29
March 2019. Negotiations on divorce began on June 19, 2017.
A proposal for a withdrawal agreement is currently on the table in order to organize
ordered the divorce between the EU and the UK. This includes, among other things, the proposal of a
transitional period until the end of 2020. During this transition period, from the point of view of
customs, everything would remain in the current state. In this case, there would be no customs formalities,
customs controls and no customs documents required for trade between
the EU and the UK.
This will only be the case if the withdrawal agreement has been ratified by the European Parliament and the
UK Parliament by 29 March 2019. If not, we will be in a situation of ‘hard Brexit’ and the customs formalities and documents will be necessary for the
trade between the EU and the UK after 29 March 2019; Customs controls will be
Given the current uncertainty regarding the timing and ratification of the withdrawal agreement,
companies that trade with the UK must be prepared in order to, in case of hard Brexit,
limit the disruption of trade
For a large number of companies, the exit of the single market by the UK means that they
will, for the first time, be confronted with customs formalities if they want to
continue their trade relations with the UK.
In order to meet their customs obligations, it is necessary for these
companies to have an eori number.
The European Commission requires economic operators who come into contact with
Customs to identify themselves with an eori number (Economic Operator Registration
and Identification). The economic operator must register in a single Member State.
The eori number will be recognized by all customs authorities in the EU.
This number is required to file a customs declaration. Without declaration in
customs, the goods can not be loaded or unloaded and therefore there will be no
no export or import.
Today, an eori number can be requested easily via the website of the Administration
General Customs and Excise (AGD & A) via
https://finances.belgium.be/en/douanes_accises/business and then click on ‘Finances +
EORI. The AGD & A advises to make this request as quickly as possible in order to
to allow our services to treat it for a possible hard Brexit end of March.
Companies that still have no experience with customs formalities and the
filing of a customs declaration, may be assisted by a customs representative.
The customs representative is a natural or legal person who:
Warning: this document is a summary intended for users for information purposes only. Only the
Customs Code of the Union shall prevail.
• in a professional capacity, complete the customs formalities for import, export and
• in his name or on behalf of a principal but on behalf of a principal, and
• which is recognized by the General Administration of Customs and Excise.
A list of customs representatives is available via the mentioned website
previously, and this by clicking on ‘Customs Representative’.
For any additional questions regarding customs and Brexit,

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