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HMRC announces delay to the closure of CHIEF system


Published: 16 Dec 2022 Update History

The system will now close to export declarations on 30 November 2023.

HMRC has announced it will delay the closure of its Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system, which is used to identify goods for checks at the border.

The system was due to close to export declarations on 31 March 2023. This has now been delayed until 30 November 2023. CHIEF closed to import declarations, with a few exceptions, with effect from 30 September 2022.

From 1 December 2023, all import and export declarations will need to be made through HMRC’s Customs Declaration Service (CDS).

According to HMRC’s Sarah Hartley, Director of Border Change Delivery, the delay will enable HMRC to spend more time working with industry to test and deliver critical functionality. It will also allow more support to be provided to declarants that have not yet transitioned to CDS.

Ed Saltmarsh, VAT and Customs Manager, ICAEW says: “This delay means the transition to CDS will have taken over five years in total, since it was first introduced in August 2018. It was initially due to be the single platform for making customs declarations by early 2019. That being said, ICAEW welcomes this latest delay. The CDS is still experiencing some teething issues. ICAEW is pleased to see that HMRC is committed to resolving these problems before extending mandatory use of the CDS to export declarations.”

ICAEW remains committed to working with HMRC through forums such as the Joint Customs Consultative Committee to identify and resolve issues with the CDS.

HMRC will provide further information on the timeline for CDS exports by the end of January 2023.

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