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Info Brexit


1. With Brexit, will the United Kingdom be considered a non-EU Member State for customs matters?

Yes, in case of Hard Brexit, implying that the United Kingdom will exit the Customs Union.

2. Is there an agreement for a transition period?

Yes, an exit agreement with a transition period, that would allow the United Kingdom to benefit from the acquis communautaire until December 31st 2020 was reached on November 13th 2018. Please see:  https://ec.europa.eu/commission/brexit-negotiations/negotiating-documents-article-50-negotiations-united-kingdom_en.

3. When will we know about the Brexit?

If the withdrawal agreement will be approved by the European Union and Council and ratified by the United Kingdom by March 29th 2019, Brexit’s effects on customs matters will be postponed until December 31st 2020. If no agreement is reached, UK will be fully considered as a non-EU third country starting from March 30th 2019

4. What would happen if no agreement is reached?

If no agreement is reached, there would be no transition period and all consequences related to the UK’s new status would be applied already starting from March 30th 2019. In particular, this would mean that traders should reintroduce both customs (import/export and transit declarations) and non-customs obligations and procedures (sanitary and phytosanitary controls).

5. What would happen to travellers entering the EU from the United Kingdom?

Travellers entering the EU from the United Kingdom carrying goods in their luggage or otherwise with them are entitled to duty free allowances (meaning goods exempt from import duty and VAT, and where applicable excise duty). The goods concerned and the corresponding allowances can be found at:


Travellers are advised to familiarise themselves with the rules concerning duty free allowances and only go through the green customs exit ("green channel") if they have no more than the maximum quantities allowed. Otherwise they should use the red exit ("red channel") and make a customs declaration.

6. Can non-EU citizens get refund of VAT when  leaving EU trough United Kingdom?  

Visitors from outside the EU are entitled to get a refund of VAT paid on goods they have purchased during their stay in the EU provided that the goods are presented to customs on departure from the EU together with the VAT refund documents.

Guide to VAT refund for visitors to the EU

7. I am a EU business man. In case of Hard Brexit how will my business with the United Kingdom change after March 29th 2019?

In commercial transactions, the same rules, including customs procedures, applied to non-EU third countries would apply to the United Kingdom.

8. In case of Hard Brexit, if I want to carry out my customs procedures for goods coming from the United Kingdom in the customs office nearest to my company, what should I do?

The United Kingdom expressed its wish to join the common transit Convention, once the exit procedures from the EU will have been completed. Such Convention represents the legal base of the transit system both for the European Union and for some neighbouring countries, such as Switzerland. The date for the entry into force of the current Convention’s provisions with the United Kingdom is not known at present. However, the European Commission is working in order to reach an arrangement as soon as possible.

9. I am an exporter of alcohol products to the United Kingdom. What should I do after March 29th 2019?

If no agreement is reached by the parties, all provisions concerning third countries would be already applied starting from March 30th 2019, including the need to submit an export customs declaration for your goods. For more detailed info: https://www.adm.gov.it/portale/web/guest/faq

10. I am an Authorized Economic Operator. What will change as of March 30th 2019?

AEOs, depending on the type of authorisation obtained, will continue to enjoy favourable treatment throughout the EU, in accordance with the relevant EU programme. Only AEO transactions to the UK will be considered as imports/exports, while those to other Member States will continue to be considered as intra-Community transactions. Following the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union, only in the case of a mutual recognition agreement of authorised economic operators between the parties, it will be possible to establish the rules for the favourable treatment of European AEOs and British AEOs.

11. In case of Hard Brexit, what will happen to applications for customs protection of intellectual property rights and the related decisions granting them by the United Kingdom as of March 30th 2019?

The United Kingdom's exit from the European Union will also have an impact on customs action to protect intellectual property rights. Indeed, from 30 March 2019 it will no longer be possible to submit applications for action to the competent department of the United Kingdom Customs Administration. Likewise, the decisions granting applications issued by the United Kingdom will no longer be valid in the other EU countries. Applications for action and decisions granting EU applications submitted in other Member States will remain valid in the country of submission and in all other countries except the UK. More information is available on DGTAXUD website

12. What should I do in case of doubts on customs procedures related to the Brexit?

The Customs Agency website includes specific information on customs clearance, transit, controls with third countries and customs simplification procedures. It is also possible to:

  • Ask questions and request assistance by writing to adm.infobrexit@adm.gov.it;
  • Obtain general information on the application of customs legislation, excise duties and export refunds through the telematic URP service (Office for Relations with the Public), using the procedure described on the Agency's website at the following link: https://www.adm.gov.it/portale/lagenzia/contatta-lagenzia/area-dogane/urp-telematico. In case of detailed questions concerning specific customs operations, it is possible to contact the local customs offices competent for these operations directly by consulting the Agency's website.
  • Consult the documents published by the European Commission in order to be updated on the main developments in the dossier. More information available at: https://ec.europa.eu/info/brexit/brexit-preparedness_en.