Further Brexit grant funding has been announced that can support SME customs intermediaries, traders and hauliers to complete customs declarations in readiness for the UK leaving the EU.
There are now three grants available covering training, recruitment and IT improvements.
- Training - the training grant is open to businesses that complete customs declarations for themselves or someone else (or intend to in the future). It will cover training that provides employees with skills to complete customs declarations or other declarations required to complete customs processes (such as safety and security declarations) and carry out the technical processes of customs procedures. The grant could give 100% of training costs for employees up to a limit of £2,250 per employee per course. It will also cover internal training course costs up to a limit of £250 per employee per course. The grant can be used to cover the cost of relevant training incurred since 31st July 2019 but ad hoc ‘on the job’ informal training is not eligible.
- Recruitment – the grant is aimed at businesses currently completing customs declarations on behalf of importers and exporters and that have been established in the UK for at least 12 months. The funding can cover the recruitment and salary costs of new employees from 1st October 2019 who will help the business complete customs declarations. Up to £3,000 for each employee is available, and businesses could also get up to £10,000 for any employee recruited before 31st January 2021 to cover up to 3 months’ salary.
- IT Improvements – this grant must be used to acquire packaged software that increases the automation and productivity of completing customs declarations and will cover the first-year license. The 100% funding can also be used to buy hardware needed to run the software, installation, configuration and related software training. It can be used towards relevant IT improvement costs incurred since 31st October 2019 but it cannot be used to commission bespoke software or unrelated networking costs.
The total amount of grant available is capped at the State Aid de-minimis limit of Euro 200,000.
Applications will close on 31st January 2021 or earlier if funding is fully allocated. For further details on eligibility and how to apply, contact 028-90415471 or visit the Gov.uk website.
If you would like to discuss how Brexit could impact on your import and export activity, Wendy Andrews is a VAT expert in this area and would be happy to talk with you.