Business West urges companies to complete import declarations as deadline looms

10th June 2021

As the deadline nears for making a full declaration for EU imports that arrived after 31/12/20, businesses must get prepared for making their declarations if they did not do so at the time of import. This process is called making a supplementary declaration.

Catherine Stephens Head of International Trade Services at Business West said:

“It is crucial that companies who chose to delay their important declarations act now to ensure that they do not incur fines or face prosecution.

“The deadline for the full completion of these documents for businesses whose goods arrived after 31/12/2020 is 25th June and if businesses need support with these, they should get in touch with us without delay. 

“Our expert team with years of experience in completing export documentation, will ensure that all paperwork is completed accurately.” 

What is a supplementary declaration?

A supplementary declaration is an electronic message submitted to HMRC using the Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight system (CHIEF) or Customs Declaration Service (CDS). 

You will need to make a supplementary declaration after you’ve made an entry in your own declarations – known as ‘entry in declarant’s records’ or EIDR if you’ve made a simplified frontier declaration. 

You can make these declarations into your commercial records and delay sending HMRC the full information about your goods by up to 175 days from the date of import. 

If you imported goods on 1 January 2021, you will need to make your supplementary declarations by 25 June 2021. This will provide customs with more information about your imported goods.

What does the supplementary declaration need to include?

Your declaration will need to include:

  • A customs procedure code
  • A commodity code
  • Your declaration unique consignment reference which is the main reference number that links declarations 
  • Consignee and consignor
  • Type, amount, and packaging of your goods
  • Transport methods and costs
  • Currencies and valuation methods
  • Certificates and licenses


You will also need to find out the boxes you need to complete on your declaration in:

More information can be found here. 

How we can help 

We are authorised at Business West by HMRC to process supplementary customs declarations and will ensure that all the correct information is submitted. Any mistakes or errors in your declarations could incur penalties or fines. You can find more information on our Customs Declarations service here. 

If you would like to complete your customs declarations yourself, we are also running Customs Declaration Training. Find out when and how to apply here. 

  • Get trained on Customs Declarations

    Since 1 January 2021, businesses trading with the EU have needed skilled staff to complete customs declarations. Our training will highlight all you need to know to be able to accurately complete a simple customs declaration and continue trading effectively and efficiently with the EU.

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  • Get in touch

    Need help with customs declarations? Get in touch with our expert team, who can guide you through the process.

  • I’d like to say a big thank you to Business West’s Customs Declarations team. A few weeks ago, I could not find any agent to make my import declaration for an order placed with our Italian supplier. The team offered me its services and made my life 100% easier. I highly recommend them.
    Corinne Sarkissian
    Leafield Environmental