April 2021 / United Kingdom

April 29 2021

Brexit: European Union Ratifies EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement

The Council of the European Union has concluded the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement. The decision to conclude the agreement, adopted on 29 April 2021 after the European Parliament granted its consent, is the last step for the European Union in the ratification of the agreement.

The agreement establishes a Free Trade Agreement, a close partnership on citizens' security and an overarching governance framework to regulate the relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union. It aims at ensuring a level playing field in areas such as VAT, customs, social security coordination, State aid, tax transparency and anti-avoidance. The agreement has been provisionally applied as of 1 January 2021.

As next steps, the United Kingdom will be notified of the finalization of the internal EU procedures and the agreement will be published in the Official Journal of the European Union before the end of the month. The agreement will enter into force on 1 May 2021.

April 22 2021

No VAT Or Customs Duties To Be Imposed on Movements of Goods Between Great Britain and Northern Ireland

On 21 April 2021, the United Kingdom announced its plan according to which no customs duties or value added tax (VAT) charges will be imposed on businesses moving certain UK goods from Great Britain to Northern Ireland in cases where those goods have temporarily stayed in Northern Ireland. According to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the objective of the measure is to recognize the position of Northern Ireland as part of the customs territory of the United Kingdom by providing relief from customs duties and VAT charges, and other customs formalities.