The Expert Exporter: Rules of Origin, Customs Declarations and your Lunch & Learn invite

Welcome to the final Expert Exporter Newsletter of 2021. Hard to believe it’s nearly the end of the year! What an eventful 12 months it has been, with Covid and Brexit impacting on business. Yet the world still spins, and some prosper, making the most of new opportunities, whilst others struggle to come to terms with the challenges. 

At Go Exporting we have been extremely busy supporting many clients through the challenges of Brexit, helping others expand into new international markets, providing webinars and training on exporting, working with the likes of Alibaba USA, Enterprise Nation, Business Wales, the British Library, trade associations and banks. 

We are proud to have been voted one of the Top 5 Export Consultants and Top 50 Advisors of any category by Enterprise Nation.  

Thoughts now turn to 2022 and what the New Year will bring. Covid is still with us, and it looks like we’ll have to learn to live with it, carry on regardless. The challenges of Brexit remain and with the rules tightening in 2022 there seems no let up. 

In our last newsletter, we looked at Rules of Origin, that they will be more strictly enforced and how businesses need to be prepared to prove the provenance of their products. If you have not already looked into this, there is no time to lose. 

For further information, we are running a Lunch and Learn with Enterprise Nation on this subject on 14th December. Register via this link  https://www.enterprisenation.com/find-something/lunch-and-learn-rules-of-origin-about-to-bite/

For UK companies, 2022 also means Customs Declarations will become due at the time of import. The ability to delay declarations for 6 months, introduced by the Government to ease the EU exit for importers, comes to end. Are you ready? Have you submitted all your supplementary declarations for this year? HMRC is starting to chase down missing declarations and you may incur duty and other costs if you have not completed yours in time. If you are struggling to submit in time, we can help. 

More than anything though, here at Go Exporting we enter 2022 with a sense of anticipation and excitement at the world of opportunities opening up for exporters. The time is now right to look to new markets, evaluate the prospects and set a path to international expansion. 

This week we ran a webinar on the opportunities in the often-overlooked Switzerland market with our official Swiss partners, Prodigo. The Swiss economy has already bounced back to pre-Covid levels and it offers one of the highest levels of disposable income in the world. Next year also sees the removal of import duties on many industrial imports, so now really is a good time to look at this market. If you missed the webinar you can view a recording on our website. 

It just remains for us to wish you a very Merry Christmas and an extremely Prosperous New Year – with the help of Go Exporting of course! 

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SIITACE launch announcement

At last! A voice for independent international trade & customs experts! 

Launched this month is a new Society of Independent International Trade And Customs Experts – SIITACE.

This represents a new, fresh approach to looking after the interests and values of this vital independent sector.  Specifically offering real help to the International Trade Community through our founding members specialist knowledge and experience covering all aspects of overseas trade including promotion & market entry; business support; international sales and marketing; customs; tax & vat; warehousing; trade finance; and logistics.

“I am proud to be a founder member of SIITACE. The opportunity to work and share ideas with fellow independent trade advisors is sure to be a great bonus to us individually and as a sector. It provides the ability to speak as one voice to influence government policy on exports and provide expert support to UK businesses in their drive to expand internationally following the exit from the EU”

Who runs SITTACE?

SIITACE is a Community Interest Company established to encourage collaboration and best practice within the international trade and customs disciplines. Our directors and founding members have many years of real-life experience in global trade and customs. We seek to attract a membership from all aspects of overseas trade beginning with experts in business support, sales and marketing, customs, tax & VAT, and logistics but growing in the direction our membership decides. It’s your society so, for that reason as we grow, it will take the shape needed to fulfil the business needs of international traders, importers and exporters. 

Freedom to offer impartial support and advice 

As a non-public sector organisation, not tasked to achieve government targets, we have the freedom to offer impartial support and advice to our members and to the wider international trade community.

Become a member….

Our members have access to the knowledge and experience of fellow members from all areas of the international trade spectrum. We are here to help and support each other.

Benefits of membership include:

  • Support of like-minded professionals
  • Access to our knowledge bank of resources
  • Opportunity to contribute to debate and discussion on how we can work together to improve the provision of international trade advice within the private sector.

Register your interest here.

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Enterprise Nation top 50 advisors 2021: vote for us!

We are delighted to let you know that Go Exporting has been selected by Enterprise Nation as one of the Top 5 Export Consultants and Top 50 advisors of any category in the UK.

This success is down to you, our valued customers and subscribers. We thank you.

The vote is now open to select the No. 1 Export Consultant out of the 5 shortlisted. Would you be able to spare a couple of minutes of your time to vote for us via this link?

https://www.enterprisenation.com/top50awards/

Being voted your No. 1 would be a great honour and help us deliver even more expert exporter content. We are planning a Lunch & Learn Session on Rules of Origin, participating in a round table discussion on the impact of Brexit with customs experts from Deloitte and will host a series of free webinars in early 2022 for example.

Thank you for your vote and continued support!

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The Expert Exporter: concerns over Rules of Origin

It’s November already, where has the year gone to?! 

In the UK thoughts are turning to Bonfire Night on November 5th, where we celebrate a failed gunpowder plot to kill King James 1 in 1605 with fireworks and bonfires across the country. 

Fireworks of a different kind are about to hit UK and EU exporters under the Trade and Cooperation Agreement’s clauses concerning Rules of Origin. From 1st January 2022 businesses will have to demonstrate they are compliant with the new rules and be able to prove the origin of their products. 

Up to now, there has been a grace period where a simple statement of origin has sufficed, and the rules have not been strictly enforced. Whilst this has helped to smooth the EU exit transition, it has led to a false sense of security for many exporters as they have not been challenged on origin. From next year this may change, and they need to hold proof in order to continue to benefit from tariff-free trade. This applies equally to UK and EU exporters to the other’s territory. 

Many businesses are reportedly underprepared and unaware of just how much evidence they’ll have to provide in order to gain tariff-free access. 

The UK-EU Trade & Cooperation Agreement contains 50 pages on how rules of origin work following Brexit. Every business that exports need to be aware of these. There are different rules for different products, so it is not straightforward. Many do not have the manpower or expertise to fully evaluate the situation.

To claim UK or EU origin, a product must be made up of a certain amount of originating components or constituent parts. The level required varies by product, with many being around 50%. EU and UK parts can count towards the origin of the other, but only if they have been sufficiently worked in the other’s territory. This means if you are a UK manufacturer and you import components from the EU, you can only claim them towards UK origin if you have worked them sufficiently in the UK. Simple re-packaging does not count. 

Marks & Spencer fell foul of this rule with their Percy Pig sweets which they import from Germany and then exported to Ireland without any change in the product. In this scenario, import duty becomes due on the product. There are ways around this, for example using Customs Special Procedures, which we can advise upon. 

To claim UK or EU origin you must hold sufficient evidence to prove this. There can, and most likely will, be checks moving forward, particularly if the relationship between the UK and EU worsens, for example surrounding fishing rights or Northern Ireland.

In 2020 we presented a webinar calling Rules of Origin: the greatest Brexit challenge you’ve never heard of. That’s about to change as everyone becomes acutely aware of the challenges. Time is short, now is the time to act and gather the evidence you need to prove origin. 

As a starting point, we have produced a free Rules of Origin Guide and Workbook which takes you through a step-by-step process on how to evaluate the true origin of your products. Download your copy here today. 

Or contact us for further details and support on +44 (0)800 689 1423 and email info@goexporting.com.

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The Expert Exporter: return of the conference and exhibition season

The conference and exhibition season is starting and this year the events are mostly back to normal rather than virtual. That’s a relief for many. Time to get away from Zoom and engage in person with potential customers and distributors from new international markets. 

Video calling has its place in developing an export market. A lot of time and money can be saved by holding those initial meetings virtually. It’s important your sales team knows how to sell via a screen though. It’s different and definitely not natural for most experienced export salespeople. They are skilled at developing relationships face to face and building trust over time. 

The personal meeting will still have an important role to play, however. It is predicted that conferences will become more important as a focal point for arranging meetings rather than spending endless hours travelling from one client to another in a foreign country. 

Making the most of those events is therefore critical to their success. Don’t leave it to chance that your ideal customer or partner will be there and come to visit your stand at just the right moment when you are free to spend time with them. Planning and preparation are key. Here’s a handy checklist:

  • Book the conference early and plan your schedule around it
  • Request a speaker slot to make a presentation which raises your profile and highlights your expertise
  • Book accommodation in the recommended hotels to maximise networking opportunities. An extra $100 a night is value for money if it means you make more new contacts
  • Make sure your display and marketing material are prepared well in advance
  • Draw up a hit list of who you would like to meet at the event and make appointments. Start early as it may take several touchpoints to get their attention.
  • At the event be alert and proactive. Don’t sit on your computer. Look for opportunities.
  • Network, network, network. The person stood next to you may be your new biggest customer!
  • Talk to other exhibitors, even your competitors. You never know what you may find out.
  • Keep good notes on who you’ve met and what you talked about. Don’t rely on your memory, it will fail you.
  • After the event, be sure to follow up promptly and take any actions you promised to your new contacts.
  • Follow up again………….and again

In short, leave nothing to chance. You are investing in the event, both your time and money, so you need to make the most out of it.

Read more: Driver shortages, health certificate delay & post-Brexit FastTrack reviews

We often support clients at conferences and exhibitions; helping them plan their pre-event marketing; arranging meetings; manning their exhibition stands and more. For further details call +44 (0)800 689 1423 and email info@goexporting.com. 

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The Expert Exporter: Driver shortages, health certificate delay & post-Brexit FastTrack reviews

Eight months on from Brexit and some of the longer-term effects are starting to be seen in the UK. We have seen shortages of some items on supermarket shelves, fast food chains temporarily closing due to lack of chicken or changing menus as items are not available.

The issues have been put down to a shortage of labour as EU workers returned home due to Brexit and of course Covid. HGV drivers are particularly in short supply, pushing up wages and creating a rush for new drivers to take their tests as quickly as possible. Other jobs are less attractive and there is a lack of candidates from the UK, causing significant issues for farmers, for example, with reports of crops spoiling in the fields.

Marks & Spencer’s is warning that Northern Ireland faces “a substantial reduction in food supply” and price increases later this year due to the new post-Brexit rules on movement of goods. Lorries now travel to port with 700 pages of documents, yet still only 80% of goods are allowed through to Northern Ireland and even less to France.

On a more positive note, the EU delayed the introduction of new Export Health Certificates for products of animal origin until 15th January 2022, giving exporters some breathing space to get used to the new documents which must be signed by a vet.

Clearly, it is still a challenging time for exporters. Many are still pushing ahead with their international expansion plans, however. This is borne out by the number of clients seeking support from Go Exporting with our Post Brexit Review Service. Demand is increasing for help to find the best new operating model as client’s see the effects of Brexit first-hand.

We have also seen an increase in clients looking to explore new export opportunities in countries they had not previously considered, such as the USA, Asia, Australia and South America. There is a world of opportunities out there. It is important to choose the right ones through understanding of the market, devising the best route to market strategy and finding the right distributors/partners. All key areas of support offered by Go Exporting.

The summer is nearly over, it’s time to turn your thoughts back to business and developing your international presence.

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The Expert Exporter newsletter

It’s hot and sunny here in the UK this week with record temperatures. Thoughts are turning to summer holidays although the Covid situation is still a concern. With 70% of the adult population fully vaccinated, we are getting there hopefully.

Summer is always a good time to reflect on business and plan for renewed vigour in the Autumn. One great way to increase your business is export. But where do you start, or where do you go next if you already sell internationally?

We recently presented a webinar for Alibaba.com on the 7 Steps to Export Success necessary to fast track your international expansion. You can hear the webinar below and also download our 7-Steps booklet for further explanation of how to make your export journey a complete success.

It’s hot and sunny here in the UK this week with record temperatures. Thoughts are turning to summer holidays although the Covid situation is still a concern. With 70% of the adult population fully vaccinated, we are getting there hopefully.

Summer is always a good time to reflect on business and plan for renewed vigour in the Autumn. One great way to increase your business is export. But where do you start, or where do you go next if you already sell internationally?

We recently presented a webinar for Alibaba.com on the 7 Steps to Export Success necessary to fast track your international expansion. You can hear the webinar below and also download our 7-Steps booklet for further explanation of how to make your export journey a complete success.

Deciding where to concentrate your export efforts is one key element and STEP TWO in the 7-Steps. We explain how to narrow down the options and to objectively compare countries to choose the most promising for your business.

We use our own Market Priority Scoring technique to evaluate all aspects critical in the decision-making process such as:

Market size and growth rate
Barriers to Entry
Product Adaptation to the Market
Brand Awareness
Country Risk

We rate each element and weigh its importance to reach a score for each country. This allows direct comparison of countries and helps to build a priority list of target markets.Download the 7-Steps to Export Success booklet and watch the Alibaba.com webinar for more details of how to plan the next stage of your export journey.

In the meantime, have a great summer and come back invigorated for the next stage in your export journey.

Mike Wilson
CEO of Go Exporting
Author of the 7-Steps to Export Success
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Why invest in the costs of an experienced export consultant?

When you are just starting out on your export journey, there seems no end of opportunity. All you need to do is find a few distributors and off you go. Little or no cost and limitless returns?!

Unfortunately, the reality is much harder than it seems. There are many pitfalls to avoid. Targeting the right market and finding the best partner are both critical. Make the wrong choices and it can end up costing you $000s and even threaten your whole export journey.

What can go wrong?

  • You target the wrong market and spend a lot of money trying to enter when other countries offer a better opportunity
  • Your products/services are not suitable for the target market
  • Your business is not properly prepared to handle export orders
  • You try to cover too many countries in one go and end up just scratching the surface of the market, never really making progress
  • You sign up a distributor, but they do nothing to promote your products/services, resulting in low or even zero sales
  • Your distributor does not have the right contacts in your market sector to best represent your products/services in the market
  • Your distributor does not have the resources to allocate to promote your products/services
  • Your distributor or an associated company represents competing or conflicting products

Any one of these issues, or worse a combination of them, can derail your export journey before it really starts and cost you a lot of money. 

This is where an experienced export consultant comes in. We can help you make the right choices from the beginning. Making sure the basics are right, assessing the opportunities, planning your export strategy, identifying and evaluating the right partners and distributors for your business, are all critical. 

The costs of using a consultant can seem high initially but view it as an investment in your future business. The results of our input will be felt for years to come. Some businesses work with the right distributor for 20-30 years! Building successful partnerships can reap high rewards over time. 

You would view an investment in plant and machinery or computers as essential for your business and write off the cost over several years. 

Similarly, consultancy is an intellectual asset for your business, an investment that will bring returns over and over again, long after the project is complete.

So, when assessing the price of consultancy look at the costs and returns over a 5 – 10 year period. 

As an additional peace of mind, we GUARANTEE to meet agreed outputs and KPIs or your MONEY BACK

So, you have everything to gain and nothing to lose. 

We look forward to working with you.

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Have you deferred Customs Declarations in the UK since January 2021?

Has your business deferred Customs Declarations since the start of last year?

If so, you have 175 days from the date of import to submit the full declaration. That time is nearly up. You or your customs agent must file with HMRC within that deadline. 

Do you or they have the capacity to cope with the volume of entries required? Do you need additional support?

Go Exporting is pleased to offer our Customs Agency service to take up the excess. Don’t be caught out. We can help. 

Contact us today for a no-obligation discussion on your requirements and how we can ease your Customs Declarations headaches!

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Free Bootcamp: Selling globally with Amazon

On 26th and 27th January, we’ll be joining Enterprise Nation for a special Amazon Bootcamp.

The free educational online event will teach participants how to sell products globally, with sessions on marketplace essentials, guidance on shipping to the USA and selling into Europe after Brexit.

The Amazon Small Business Accelerator Boostcamp is free to join and will require a commitment of seven hours learning time over the two days where participants will also receive a certificate of completion.

Sign-up for this live Bootcamp and learn more about the agendas on both days here.

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