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Brexit Infringement Extended. What Does It Mean?

It was recently announced that the EU had extended the Brexit infringement completion deadline. It is now set to 15 September 2022. The UK has requested the deadline extension due to ongoing Prime Minister and Conservative party elections. Several rounds of infringement, initiated due to the UK’s failure to carry out the Northern Ireland Protocol, regulations for agriculture and food movement, and obligations of the EU sanitary rules, were set to close on 15 August

The latest infringement was based on a partial implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol, related to the IOSS VAT returns and customs checks between Northern Ireland (NI) and Great Britain. According to the European Commission, the UK failed to implement the EU Import One-Stop Shop in Northern Ireland, which affects sales of goods below €150. The UK has also delayed customs checks on goods moving to NI from the UK, which, according to the EU, threatens the safety of EU citizens. Among other allegations in the recent infringement is the UK’s failure to transpose Excise Framework Directive rules.

If the last infringement is not addressed, the question will potentially be transferred to the European Court of Justice.

The last year’s agriculture and food infringement has also seen some updates. It is claimed that the UK did not carry out mandatory sanitary controls and did not ensure the infrastructure at the NI Border Control Posts. According to the European Commission, the UK has also failed to provide required statistics on trade to Northern Ireland. Previously, the infringement was stated based on lacking certification for agriculture and food.

Northern Ireland is at the core of the Brexit process as it was positioned dually upon the UK leaving the EU. NI is part of the EU Customs Union, Single Market and VAT regime. The Northern Ireland Protocol was created to control the entrance of goods to and from the UK. The goal of the Protocol was to reduce the need for controls at the Northern Ireland and Ireland border, keeping the border control at the border of Great Britain and NI, making the NI ports function as the control posts and customs.

The UK now has until 15 September to put in place procedures and processes to fulfil the Protocol. If it fails to implement the necessary steps, the appeals will be moved to the European Court of Justice.

Do you have questions about making sales between the EU and the UK? The Vatabout team will help you!

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