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10th November 2020

With the date for the transition period for the UK leaving the EU on the 31st December drawing nearer, we felt it was important for us to issue an up to date statement on where our preparations are.

Many of our European customers have been asking for an update on our plan for Brexit.   The key news is that we will be able to deliver shipments as usual with minimal disruption and delays along with no additional Customs and admin costs for our customers.  We have put together the full details below.

We have worked hard to setup a plan to manage any eventuality with Brexit.  The uncertainty of what the outcome will be has encouraged us to come up with a plan which we believe will reassure our EU customers.  In 2019 we recruited a logistics specialist to scope out our plans and work out which are the best options.  After extensive research, we have come up with the following solution.

The Plan Details

  • We currently use DHL as our courier partner for UK and International shipments.  Our long standing relationship and confidence in their service and knowledge of logistics led us to liaise with them over a solution.  They have made the following contingency plans to manage the days, weeks and months after Brexit.
    • Employed over 200 additional staff in the UK to focus on handling Customs processing.
    • Expanded their hub in Amsterdam with an additional 500 staff recruited to focus on British goods exported to the EU.
    • Added additional cargo planes to Air Freight shipments from the UK into the Amsterdam hub as well as additional landing and take-off slots at regional airports.
    • Any Road Freight shipments that would normally pass through Dover will be routed through Air Freight as this is a potential bottle neck that could hold up shipments.
    • DHL uses “paperless trade” to raise commercial invoices for Customs processing.  Sontay already utilise this for shipments outside of the EU and Customs clearance is made whilst the order is in transit to prevent delays on arrival.
  • In the event of a “no deal” Brexit, Sontay will ship all EU shipments via DHL ‘DDP’ – Delivered Duty Paid and we will pay these charges.  We envisage that this may be needed in the short term but in the long term a deal will be put in place to alieve this need.
  • At Sontay, we have the Internal Sales department prepared to work with DHL over all EU shipments.  They will monitor their progress and ensure the process is running smoothly.  Their role will also include communication with customers on the progress of their shipment.
  • Sontay staff have undertaken Customs training and are experienced in shipping all around the world so they are able to fully understand and manage any issues that come up.
  • As we have been shipping internationally and outside of the EU for many years, we have all of the necessary tariff/commodity codes, country of origin and weights displayed clearly on all despatch paperwork.
  • We also have our (EORI) Economic Operators Registration and Identification number.  Please contact sales@sontay.com if you require this.
  • We are still awaiting guidance from the UK government on what our version of the CE Marking Declaration scheme will be.  Our products will still contain the CE Marking in the interim grace period whilst this is transitioned.
  • Additional stocks of components and products have been built up to be able to negate any delays with shipments coming into us.

We very much value our relationships with EU customers and hope that our plan will alleviate any concerns over continuity of supply no matter what the outcome.  Of course, we understand there may be many questions relating to this and we are open to any discussion with our customers on this topic.