As a forwarder, will you make sure that your customers are ready in time for Brexit in the Dutch ports? Read here which actions are required on your part for transport via both shortsea and ferry.
Step 1: Make sure your client is registered with Customs
Will your customer start importing and/or exporting for the first time as a result of Brexit? Then register for an EORI number with Customs as soon as possible. Every company in Europe involved in import or export requires such a unique identification number from Customs. Also if they use you or a customs agent to perform their import and export declarations. Pay attention! Are you currently working with a British EORI number? After the Brexit you have to convert this to an EORI number from the EU.
Step 2: Arrange the import or export declarations for your customers
Through your own customs department or a customs agent, you always arrange the import and export declarations in a timely manner.
You may also need to arrange this:
*NVWA is Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority
Step 3: Determine who will pre-notify the customs documents
After Brexit, the pre-notification of customs documents via Portbase is mandatory at all ferry terminals and most shortsea terminals in the Netherlands. As a forwarder, you can take care of this pre-notification, but the importer/exporter itself, the customs agent or, on occasion, the transporter can do this as well. Make clear agreements about this! Without pre-notification, the transporter will not be granted access to the terminal.
Step 4: Subscribe to the Portbase services
You use Portbase to digitally pre-notify cargo at shortsea and ferry terminals.
For import (cargo from the United Kingdom to the Netherlands): service Notification Import Documentation
Updated service for pre-notifying all customs documents at shortsea and ferry terminals as well after Brexit.
Take note! Additional information for existing customers of Notification Import Documentation
- In order to prenotify import documents to shortsea and ferry terminals, existing customers of Notification Import Documentation have to sign a supplementary terminal contract. In consultation with these terminals, Portbase has drawn up a single umbrella contract. By sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, you can request the umbrella contract and return the signed copy to Portbase.
- If you are an existing customer of Notification Import Documentation using a system link-up, then please check with your IT department or software supplier that you are using the correct version of the service. The message specifications can be found here.
Costs and participation Notification Import Documentation
The use of Notification Import Documentation for the pre-notification of import documents at ferry terminals involves a one-off connection fee € 249.50 (excluding VAT) for new customers. For the day-to-day use, there is a monthly subscription fee (€ 6.24 for the web service and € 20.84 for a system link-up) plus a transaction fee of € 0.18 per message.
For export (cargo from the Netherlands to the United Kingdom): service Notification Export Documentation
After Brexit, you can use this excisting service to pre-notify all customs documents at shortsea and ferry terminals as well.
Take note! Additional information for existing customers of Notification Export Documentation
If you are an existing customer already using a system link-up, then a minor adjustment is required. The message specifications necessary for this are available here.
Costs and registration Notification Export Documentation
As a new participant, the one-off connection costs are € 249.50 (excluding VAT). The day-to-day usage is free of charge.
Curious how the services work?
Step 5: Check beforehand whether the terminal has the customs documents
After the pre-notification, you can use Portbase to track the cargo in real-time. If necessary, you can still take action should something not be correct with the pre-notification.
For import (cargo from the United Kingdom to the Netherlands): service Import Status
Service for real-time insight into the customs status of incoming cargo at shortsea and ferry terminals. You can immediately see whether the required customs obligations have been met and whether Customs might want to inspect the cargo. The transporter is expected to use Import Status to verify whether the customs documents are known at the terminal before the ship arrives. Without correctly pre-notified customs documents, the cargo is not permitted to leave the terminal. The driver who picks up the cargo, will then be referred to a temporary parking location in the port area. In consultation with his planner or you as client, he can still arrange the customs formalities here.
Costs and registration Import Status
Import Status is a free service.
For export (cargo from the Netherlands to the United Kingdom): service Track & Trace Export
Post-Brexit, this existing service will offer 24/7 insight into all export shipments at shortsea and ferry terminals as well: from the moment of arrival from the hinterland until the departure to sea. The transporter is expected to use Track & Trace Export to verify whether the customs documents are known at the terminal prior to departing for said terminal. Without correctly pre-notified customs documents, the transporter will not be granted access to the terminal. His driver will then be referred to a temporary parking location in the port area. In consultation with his planner or you as client, he can still arrange the customs formalities here.
Costs and registration Track & Trace Export
Track & Trace Export is part of Notification Export Documentation and is a web-based service. After registration for Notification Export Documentation, the use of this service is completely free of charge.
Curious how the services work?
Read all the details in the Get Ready for Brexit handbook.