Goods are flowing effectively and in normal volumes between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
The Northern Ireland Protocol means that trusted traders, such as supermarkets and their suppliers, are benefiting from a three-month grace period from official certification when moving certain agri-goods. The grace periods for businesses are in operation and working well. There are no significant queues at Northern Ireland ports and supermarkets are reporting healthy supplies into their Northern Ireland stores.
There are still actions traders need to take when moving agri-goods to Northern Ireland, and the Government is making every effort to boost readiness. It is vital that traders ensure they and everyone in their supply and logistics chains, such as wholesalers and hauliers, familiarise themselves with the new processes for moving goods into Northern Ireland.
For example, traders moving agri-food goods need to pre-notify each of their consignments on the TRACES NT online system 24 hours before the movement, ensure their consignment is accompanied by the correct documentation and be ready for inspection at the GB port of departure and on arrival in Northern Ireland. The latest guidance on pre-notification can be found on the Daera website.
Additional resources including process maps, FAQs and sample certificates are available on the ‘Moving goods from Great Britain to Northern Ireland from 1 January 2021 - Trader Showcase’ page.
Assistance moving agri-goods
Traders moving agri-goods into Northern Ireland can also benefit from the Government’s Movement Assistance Scheme. The scheme means traders will not need to pay certification costs, including for Export Health Certificates, which are reimbursed by Government to those certifying the products. The scheme also includes a free helpline providing advice on new requirements: 0330 0416 580 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm on weekdays (excluding bank holidays).
Businesses moving all types of goods into Northern Ireland can also sign up for the Trader Support Service. Over 25,000 businesses have now signed up for the service which provides free advice and support to businesses of all sizes, and traders based in GB only are fully eligible for this service.
In addition, Northern Ireland’s Department for Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs are running a text alert service to receive immediate notification of any new information or guidance, enabling traders to keep goods moving into, out of or through Northern Ireland without delay. Simply text ‘DaeraEUExitNews’ to 67300.
A UK Government spokesperson said:
A new dedicated team in Government has already been set up and will be working with supermarkets, the food industry and the Northern Ireland Executive to develop ways to streamline the movement of goods in accordance with the Protocol.
The grace period for supermarkets and their suppliers is working well, goods continue to flow effectively between Great Britain and Northern Ireland and we are working intensively with industry as new requirements come in.