Agency Sector Management is advising forwarders to make the switch from Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) to the new Customs Declaration Service (CDS) sooner rather than later, in preparation for the implementation of CDS exports and New Computerised Transit System (NCTS) Phase 5 later in the year.

Speaking on the ‘Customs Declaration Service (CDS) Export and Transit Workshop’, Simon Adams, Program Manager, told delegates at Multimodal that ASM is equipped and ready to help forwarders prepare for the upcoming changes.

“Ultimately, all traders, agents, and freight forwarders involved in exporting and importing to and from the UK need to migrate to CDS,” said Adams.

“We are aware that there are many complexities to navigate when businesses make the switch to CDS, but it’s essential that forwarders seek advice and support to avoid facing non-compliance issues, which will cause delays and be costly.

“We are already providing access to the CDS online training platform for more than 90 percent of our user base through our Sequoia Customs clearance software.”

Last December, HMRC announced an extension for exporters to make the transition to CDS, which will replace the UK’s legacy CHIEF system, to Thursday 30th November 2023.

This follows the implementation of CDS imports, which was substantially completed in September 2022, and coincides with significant changes being introduced for transit by NCTS Phase 5, which will be implemented from the Thursday 16th of November 2023.

ASM, which has been providing Customs software solutions for forwarders for nearly 30 years, is currently assisting more than 500 businesses that use Sequoia to be CDS-ready before the November deadline.

“To continue supporting forwarders through these changes, we are focusing our development of Sequoia against the challenging timetable set out by HMRC,” continued Adams.

“The latest version, Sequoia v5.34, is now available and supports live, non-inventory linked CDS export declarations for goods which would normally move via a Ro-Ro port using Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS).”

“Sequoia v5.34 can also automatically use both CDS and CHIEF data to complete NCTS declarations, allowing forwarders to migrate to CDS without disrupting their transit operations.”

Adams, joined by two representatives from HMRC, welcomed questions from forwarders on best practice and what the changes will mean for the industry.

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