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Post Brexit customs charges

We continue to have issues with posting to EU countries.

When the customs rules changed after Brexit, the UK government claimed they would put in place a mechanism where the local VAT for different EU countries could be collected by us and remitted via our UK VAT return (so called IOSS). However this was not implemented and they have changed their position, now stating that this is an EU issue.

The only way it can be done is for us to appoint an agent in an EU country to handle the process but the cost of this is prohibitive for us as a small business – it would be greater than our annual sales to the EU.

Therefore any import VAT due is now charged to the customer on delivery. While we could add the VAT at the point of purchase there would be no way of showing this on the Royal Mail posting documentation so the recipient would get charged again.

There is an element of inconsistency to this – some orders are affected, some aren’t. So we continue to post orders in the hope they get through without cost. We’ve had to reduce the amount of products we make available for export and we’ve seen a 30 per cent decline in overseas subscriptions (which are an interesting case in themselves as they have one payment for a number of deliveries).

This is our understanding of the situation – if an export expert is reading this and can put us right then please drop us a line to

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