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Humanitarian Aid to Ukraine: UK Customs Easements

The UK government announced in March 2022 a customs exemption to facilitate the delivery of relief and contributions to the people of Ukraine.

Customs procedures have been simplified for products shipped from the United Kingdom to aid individuals impacted by the humanitarian situation in Ukraine.

As long as the products are not shipped to or via Russia or Belarus, these streamlined procedures apply to qualified items regardless of destination, allowing maximum flexibility in getting relief to where it is most needed.

Simple Customs Declarations

Businesses, charities, and community organisations bringing help from UK ports, on the other hand, will be allowed to submit a customs declaration by chatting with customs authorities or just driving through a port.

They will no longer be required to complete and submit electronic customs declarations to HMRC before to exporting these products, and smaller movements will no longer be required to utilise the Goods Vehicle Movement Service to pass through ports where it is available.

No notification

Other customs requirements, such as notifying HMRC when goods are exported, would also be eliminated by the easement. The easement will be in effect for a limited duration

A press release describing the adjustment is available at

A temporary method may be available for transporting items out of the UK (England, Scotland, and Wales) for the Ukrainian humanitarian situation.

Check for reduced customs procedures.

Your products must be for the Ukrainian refugees. The products must not be bound towards Russia or Belarus.

This shortened approach can only move selected commodities out of the UK. Clothes, blankets, and sanitary supplies are examples of eligible commodities.

Goods you can't export from the UK

You must remove your goods if they are excluded from travel:

  • contraband

  • human pharmaceuticals without a distributor's licence

  • excise (such as fuel, alcohol and tobacco)

  • limited items like:

    • war material

    • dual use items

    • sanctioned products

Dual-use commodities include (but are not limited to):

  • protective gear (for example, equipment which provides chemical, nuclear or biological protection)

  • toxins (for example, any chemical on the Chemical Weapons Convention list)

  • high-tech cryptographic telecommunications equipment

How to transport luggage or a small car

A compact vehicle may transport up to 9 passengers and weights 3.5 tonnes or less.

This means you have two options.

Check ahead of time whether the port or airport accepts oral declarations. When you arrive at the port or airport, you may talk to a Border Force officer at the ‘goods to declare' channel or the red point phone.

If you cannot make an oral statement, you may do one of the following:

  • A customs control point (a green channel with ‘nothing to declare') if you walk with the products

  • driving (or being driven) through a customs checkpoint with goods inside

  • driving through the port if no customs checkpoints

You or the driver should have a list of things

Before travelling, arrange comparable things together to confirm:

  • the goods

  • contact info (or the contact details of the organisation or charity you are moving the goods on behalf of)

  • the products' eventual destination

Unlike other goods transfers, you will not need to provide customs papers or get an EORI number.

How to load a bigger car with freight

A huge vehicle is one that can transport more than 9 passengers and weights more than 3.5 tonnes.

If you are utilising the Goods Vehicle Movement Service, you must:

  • Have an GB EORI number.

  • Join the Goods Vehicle Movement Service.

  • Before travelling, try to pack related things together.

  • Obtain a ‘oral or by behaviour declarations' goods movement reference utilising the Goods Vehicle Movement Service.

  • Keep track of the things.

  • Present your goods movement reference to board at the port.

Using other ports and airports

If the port or airport you're visiting doesn't provide this service, check with your shipping line or airline to see what actions you need to take.

Moving items in a bigger truck as freight

A huge vehicle is one that can transport more than nine people and weights more than 3.5 tonnes (for example, a Heavy Goods Vehicle (HGV)). Where feasible, export products should be designated as 'humanitarian assistance' on your booking systems for these journeys.

  • Goods passing through a site utilising the Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS) will continue to need a GMR; clients should complete the steps below:

  • Have an EORI number that begins with the letter GB.

  • Be a member of the Goods Vehicle Movement Service (GVMS).

  • Obtain a "declaration by behaviour." GVMS may be used to get a Goods Movement Reference (GMR) by choosing the 'oral or through conduct declarations' option.

  • To board, submit your GMR at the port of export for check-in.

  • Temporary Storage with Inventory Linking at Border Locations

Carriers will need to manifest the products if a vehicle has to transit as freight via a temporary storage place.

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