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Two months to go - make sure you are ready for CDS

BIFA has been highlighting the transition from CHIEF to CDS for some time. The BIFA Customs Policy Group representing the Membership has been providing insights to HMRC regarding how the new system actually works in practice, issues are being identified and remedies implemented.

HMRC have re-iterated to Members and wider trade on many occasions that CHIEF will be closed to new Import Customs Declarations as of the 30th September 2022.  This means that from the 1st October 2022 ALL import declarations will have to be submitted via the new Customs Declaration Service. In order for the new service to work efficiently all parties connected with providing information and submitting customs declarations need to be fully prepared for the change.  

The following link https://www.gov.uk/government/news/3500-businesses-risk-losing-ability-to-import-goods  highlights the importance of this change and outlines the steps that importers have to take to set up their CDS account.

In 2018 BIFA published two documents in response to specific Member questions regarding the correlation between Box Numbers (CHIEF) and Data Elements (CDS), the following correlation table highlights the differences between CHIEF and CDS 106503_cds_data_element_correlation_table_v4.pdf (bifa.org) This information has been incorporated into BIFA training materials. 

The amount of data required to complete a CDS declaration is greater than the equivalent in CHIEF.  BIFA has prepared the following document detailing the additional data which needs to be collected and included in a CDS declaration. cds-data-requirements-form.pdf (bifa.org)

The Association has also created a microsite Useful Resources & Videos - BIFA which includes much vital information in the subject.   Also, in the BIFAlink August 2022 edition on pages 9-12 there is additional information on transitioning to CDS, this is also available to download as pdf

Having spoken to Members who have preparing to move from CHIEF to CDS, software providers and CSPs it is clear that the transition to CDS is hard at every stage.  There is more data to collect, including valuation information, CPCs are now in two parts and authorisations.  The reality is that without having this information customs entries will be delayed, and freight movements disrupted.

There is further information and assistance is provided on the government website, including a CDS toolkit, import and export guides, and checklists.  HMRC are increasing their communications with the importer community, the Department is contacting declarants by phone and email to inform them of the steps they need to take to transition from CHIEF to CDS.


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