Do you import or export? Know your EORI number

Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce

Do you Import or Export? Know Your EORI Number

By Daniel Clarke, Policy & Research Advisor, GBCC

In summary:

  • EORI numbers are required for companies importing or exporting to/from countries outside of the EU.
  • In a no deal Brexit scenario, they will also be needed by companies importing or exporting to/from the EU only. They EORI numbers will also be required for companies importing from the EU who want to register for the Government’s Transitional Simplified Procedures to reduce Brexit disruption.
  • If you have one or more EU supplier(s) or customer(s) make sure you have applied to the UK Government for your EORI number now.

Did you know?

If you have any queries about trading internationally the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce can help you. Our International Trade Advisors can help you find new markets to sell your products in, our Enterprise Europe Network Team can help you find new suppliers, customers and partners and our Export Documentations Team can help make sure your fundamental paperwork and processes in order. We also have an expert translations service that can help you communicate with businesses the world over. Find our more here.

What are EORI Numbers?

An EORI number stands for Economic Operator Registration and Identification Number. If you are a business based in the European Union, and you want to import or export goods to a country outside of the trading bloc, then you will require an EORI number to do so. This number is a unique identification code which businesses and individuals use in all customs procedures when exchanging information with customs administrations. The code makes it easier to track shipments and is used for both statistical and security purposes.

What do EORI Numbers have to do with Brexit?

As the UK is currently a member of the European Union, this means that UK businesses do not currently require an EORI number when importing or exporting goods to other EU countries. If the UK were to leave the European Union in a no deal scenario then your business will need an EORI number to continue importing and exporting goods with the EU, as the UK will be outside of the Customs Union. If trading with the EU, you will need to have a European EORI number in addition to a UK EORI number. This means UK businesses who are not established in an EU customs territory should apply for a European EORI number through the customs authorities of the EU country responsible for the place where a customs entry or exit declaration where they first submit a declaration or apply for a decision.

If your business imports from the EU then it will need an EORI number to register for the Transitional Simplified Procedures that the government will put in place in a no deal scenario. The Transitional Simplified Procedures will reduce the amount of information that businesses need to provide in an import declaration (for a temporary period) and allow them to defer paying any duty. 

UK based businesses can apply for an EORI number by visiting the UK government website and completing the appropriate application form. You can check whether your organisation already has an EORI number by visiting the EORI online database.

Before applying for an EORI number, UK businesses which are already VAT registered will need their VAT registration number and the name under which their business is registered for VAT. For those that are not currently registered in the UK for VAT, they will need to provide an address in the United Kingdom, an email address, their date of birth and National Insurance number. Once your application has been submitted it usually takes at least three working days for HMRC to process. Once completed, they will send you your EORI number via email.

Where Can I Find Out More About Applying for my EORI Number?

You can find more information on EORI and how to apply by visiting the UK Government website here.

How might Brexit impact your business?

Don’t forget to take your Business Brexit Health Check for your free report on how Brexit may impact your organisation and the steps you can take to prepare.