The UK Approach to GSP Post Brexit

The UK Approach to GSP Post Brexit
November 20, 2020 Hannah Marshallsay
brexit update

The Government has recently announced that the same countries that are currently eligible for trade preferences under the EU’s Generalised System of Preference (GSP) will continue after the end of the Brexit transition period from 1st January 2021.

This is an important announcement for many of our customers as this will mean that supply chains can operate in the same manner as at present and they can continue to help to support the least developed nations.

What is the current GSP arrangement?

The EU´s current Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) has applied since 1 January 2014. The GSP is intended to provide the least developed countries with the opportunity to export goods to other countries on preferential trade terms. These terms mean various goods such as clothing and other textile products enter western markets such as the EU at reduced or zero rates of import duty. At the end of the Brexit transition period the UK will set its own rules around GSP, as a result of the UK being independent of the European Union.

What will GSP after Brexit look like?

The announcement from the UK indicates that from 1st January 2021 eligible developing countries will be able to get the same trade preferences through the UK’s GSP. The trade preferences will reduce or remove rates of duty (tariffs) on imports from eligible developing countries into the UK and will follow a number of frameworks. These frameworks replicate the market access provided by the EU’s GSP.

  • Least Developed Countries Framework (LDCF)
  • General Framework
  • Enhanced Framework

Click here to see attached the full list of UK GSP beneficiary countries for the current three schemes.

How to qualify for preferential duty rates

To qualify for preferential duty rates, products originating in the beneficiary countries of the UK’s GSP must be accompanied by a proof of origin. This can be either:

  • a GSP Form A – which does not need to be stamped and signed by an authority designated by the GSP country: you can submit a copy
  • an origin declaration on the supplier’s invoice (which can include a valid REX registration number dated prior to 01/01/21) but must include information to enable the identification of the originating goods. (Please refer to the example of wording below.)

 We would request that our customers check with all their suppliers and ensure that any future consignments with GSP status will either be covered by a certificate or will show an origin declaration on the commercial invoice worded as follows:

The exporter (insert exporter’s name) of the products covered by this document declares that, except where otherwise clearly indicated, these products are of (insert country of origin) preferential origin according to the rules of the generalised system of preferences and that the origin criterion met is (insert ‘P’ or ‘W’ as appropriate).

Please note any invoice dated on or after 01/01/2021 which only shows a REX number will not be accepted as evidence of GSP status.

See HMRC’s Notice 830 for more information about rules of origin documentation.

Should you require any further information, or need clarification of how any of the above may affect your business, please do not hesitate to get in touch, we would be happy to help. 

Imports Team on 01376 533042.
Customs Team on 01376 533006.

We will keep you posted on further Brexit developments as and when they occur.


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