The UK Government has agreed to act on the Chamber of Commerce Network call to automatically issue businesses with an EORI number. An EORI number is an Economic Operator Registration and Identification number which businesses need to trade goods with countries outside the EU.
Introduced in 2009 The EORI system replaced the Traders Union Reference Number System which had previously identified traders for customs declarations when importing or exporting cargo.
Welcoming the announcement, Babs Murphy, CEO of the NWL Chamber of Commerce said: “We are delighted that the Government have listened to the Chambers and this common sense step will prompt more of our local businesses to prepare for change, and consider what else they need to do to be ready for an unwanted ‘no deal’ scenario.
“Businesses have strongly confirmed they do not want a messy or disorderly ‘no deal’ Brexit on 31 October, but given the ticking clock, it’s prudent that both Government and industry is as prepared as possible. The proportion of firms applying for EORI numbers was concerningly low, and automatic issuance will help ease the administrative burden facing companies in the weeks and months ahead.
She added: “Businesses still need clarity on many other cross-border trade issues, such as customs procedures at borders following a ‘no deal’ exit and when the Government will launch an official database to provide ease of access to information on tariffs and quotas.
“We are pleased that officials in Whitehall have agreed to issue EORI numbers but there is great deal more to be done as October 31st looms, the Government must urgently provide reassurance to businesses that trade will be unhindered as well as ramping up guidance and support for businesses.”
Businesses can find additional support on Brexit on the BCC website here.