How to prepare for the Customs Declaration Service (CDS) replacing CHIEF from August 2018.

You’ll need to prepare for CDS if you or your agent make customs declarations for goods imported from and exported outside the EU through CHIEF or a software provider.

HMRC will introduce CDS in 3 stages:

HMRC will contact you if you’re in the group of importers who’ll be using CDS from August 2018. You do not need to do anything if HMRC does not contact you.

To start using CDS from November 2018 for imports, your software provider or in-house software team will need to have developed a CDS compatible package.

CHIEF will continue to run throughout this period. If you import and export, you may need to use both CHIEF and CDS for a short period of time.

Prepare for CDS

Your in-house software team or software provider should be developing a CDS compatible software package. If they have not told you how they’re preparing for CDS, check they’re in contact with HMRC. They can email for information and support on CDS.

The Trade Tariff for imports will be available in August 2018. It will show the extra information you’ll need to provide to comply with the Union Customs Code. Your software provider will also tell you about changes to the way you make declarations.

The Trade Tariff for exports will be available at a later date.

Importers using CDS from August 2018

The first release of CDS will go live in August 2018, but live functionality will be limited to:

  • supplementary declarations submitted directly to HMRC:
    • into free circulation
    • out of customs warehousing into free circulation

If you move to CDS in August 2018 you:

  • will be using a limited range of customs procedures
  • can only pay outright liabilities through a single deferment account on a declaration
  • will not use immediate payments, securities, duty suspensions or quotas
  • can only use UK warehouses

For goods subject to licenses, you can only declare commodities that need Department for International Trade electronic licences.

Other functions that will be available soon are:

  • simplified declarations:
    • into free circulation
    • into customs warehousing
    • out of customs warehousing and into excise warehousing
    • out of customs warehousing and into free circulation with Onward Supply Relief
  • pre-lodged simplified declarations into free circulation

Remaining importers and exporters

You’ll be able to use CDS for imports from November 2018, once your software provider or in-house software team has developed a CDS compatible software package.

Exporters will be able to use CDS at a later date. HMRC will provide more information on when this is going to happen.

Export Declaration Service

As part of our continued commitment to support businesses realise their international business potential, East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce can act on your behalf and submit your electronic export declarations. Taking advantage of this service will give you peace of mind to focus on other areas of your business safe in the knowledge that your goods can reach their final destination smoothly and efficiently.

We will also provide you with the relevant paperwork as proof of export to satisfy an HMRC audit visit, giving exporters peace of mind.
What to expect from your Chamber:

  • Submit your consignments onto the online Customs Declaration site
  •  Provide you with tracking information
  •  Provide you with evidence which will satisfy a Customs audit visit

Marie White, International Business Officer said “It is essential to satisfy a customs audit and is your responsibility to have the correct paper trail in place. East Lancs Chamber of Commerce is your trusted third party who can complete your customs Export Declarations on your behalf taking the pressure off exporting allowing you to concentrate on the important things like winning those orders”.

For more information, please contact Marie White on 01254 356448 or