Businesses urged to join the Trader Support Service ahead of Brexit
The government is urging businesses to sign up to the Trader Support Service as the Brexit transition period ends next month.
More than 7,000 businesses have now signed up to the new Trader Support Service (TSS), which will support traders moving goods under the Northern Ireland Protocol from 1 January 2021.
In the past 10 days alone, registrations to the TSS have increased by around 50 per cent, but with fewer than 50 days to go until the end of the Brexit transition period, more traders are being urged to register now and take advantage of the scheme’s wide-ranging package of customs support and guidance.
"While it is good news to see more than 7,000 businesses signing up to the Trader Support Service, I really would encourage more traders to act now and take advantage of this free-to-use service," said Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Brandon Lewis.
"There will be changes to the way goods move between Great Britain and Northern Ireland in fewer than 50 days – that’s why I urge more traders to sign up to this service and get ready."
The TSS launched on 28 September, providing a free-to-use digital platform to help businesses and traders of all sizes navigate the upcoming changes to the way goods move.
The comprehensive service will complete digital processes on behalf of all businesses moving goods into Northern Ireland under the Northern Ireland Protocol and is backed by up to £200 million in funding.
As part of the government’s investment in the TSS, a new contact centre went live on 2 November, creating 150 jobs in Northern Ireland. The contact centre is now available to support traders over the phone with the registration process.
The TSS, which is already providing guidance and training to help businesses prepare for 1 January, will:
- enable traders to complete declarations without needing to purchase specialist software;
- save traders significant time in completing declarations; and
- reduce traders’ declaration costs as the service is free-to-use.
Traders who sign up before 23 November will also be automatically issued a unique identifying number that will be required from January to move goods to or from Northern Ireland. Those who register later may need to apply separately to be issued with this number.