This year, as we mark the centenary of Northern Ireland, we need no reminder about its integral place within our United Kingdom.
Our trade deal with the EU and the additional agreement known as the Northern Ireland Protocol has safeguarded Northern Ireland’s place in the UK’s customs territory. We have also preserved unfettered access for Northern Ireland traders moving goods into Great Britain, removing the need for export declarations.
However, there are changes to the way goods move between Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Many businesses have adjusted quickly to these new requirements but I recognise that some traders are still adapting. The Government is committed to providing you with the support you need as your work continues. We have set up two services to help you:
- Trader Support Service (TSS): This free UK Government-backed service will guide you through any changes you need to make, and can complete customs declarations on your behalf. The TSS also offers a comprehensive range of education materials including online training, webinars and “how to” guides.
- Movement Assistance Scheme (MAS): Free support, including a dedicated helpline, is available for traders and businesses moving animals, plants and associated products from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. MAS also means that traders will not need to pay health certification costs, which will be met by the UK Government.
The most up-to-date guidance on the Northern Ireland Protocol is on GOV.UK, including information on moving goods into, out of, or through Northern Ireland.
Thank you all for everything you have done to prepare, and I am grateful for your pragmatic approach to keeping business moving.
Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng MP
Secretary of State for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy