From 1 January 2021, find out when you will still be able to use CHIEF (for a limited period of time) for declaring goods into or out of Northern Ireland.
The Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system can still be used for declaring goods entering Northern Ireland from outside the UK and EU from 1 January 2021, for a limited period of time.
You can do this for:
- import declarations for movements of goods directly into Northern Ireland from outside the UK and EU
- export declarations for movements of goods directly from Northern Ireland to outside the UK and EU
You can also do this for import declarations for movements of goods into Northern Ireland from outside the UK and EU through Great Britain (England Scotland and Wales) (transshipment) if:
- the goods are not customs cleared in Great Britain
- the goods are moved by transit from Great Britain to Northern Ireland
You will not be able to use CHIEF for declaring goods into or out of Northern Ireland for:
- declaring movements of goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland (other than transshipment)
- declaring indirect EU exports (movements of goods from Northern Ireland to a country outside the UK and EU via an EU member state)
If you import into a Special Procedure on CHIEF for movements of goods into Northern Ireland from outside the UK and EU, you will not be able to re-export directly into Great Britain using CHIEF. More guidance about this will be published as soon as possible.
You should discuss the use of CHIEF with your customs agent before making declarations.
This ability to use CHIEF for these declarations is subject to review by HMRC. In due course all declarations into and out of Northern Ireland will have to be made on the Customs Declaration Service.
Traders in Northern Ireland will need an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number with an XI prefix from 1 January 2021:
- when using the New Computerised Transit System (NCTS) to move goods under transit
- to use the Import Control System (ICS) to submit safety and security (S&S) declarations
- to access certain EU authorisations
CHIEF will not be compatible with XI prefixes and traders will need to use their GB prefixed EORI on CHIEF.