The Customs Declaration Service (CDS) will replace the current Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) service and its functionalities. CDS will be compatible with the EU Customs Data Model and UCC requirements.

CDS will introduce a number of changes to the way in which Customs entries are prepared and processed. Some of the major changes are listed below:

The old C88 will disappear completely and instead of ‘boxes’ to complete, the declaration will now consist of data sets. HMRC will be publishing a correlation table that lists the old C88 box numbers and the data set that now replaces it.

Initially declarants will have to select which of 6 ‘Declaration Categories’ is applicable to their ‘entry’ and then complete 8 data elements per declaration.

The UCC data elements are grouped in sections:

Group 1: Message Information (including Procedure Codes)
Group 2: References of messages, document, certificates and authorisations
Group 3: Parties
Group 4: Valuation information and taxes
Group 5: Dates, times, periods, places, countries and regions
Group 6: Goods identification
Group 7: Transport information (modes, means and equipment)
Group 8: Other data elements (statistical data, guarantees and tariff related data)

Group 3 will require much more information about shippers/exporters/importers/buyers than previously required on the C88.

Note also that the CPC (Customs Procedure Code) will now be split into 2 parts, the 1st 4 digits in one section then the remaining 3 digits in another field.

Importers will be required to provide a lot more data to their clearance agent/freight forwarder for CDS and there will no longer be any hard copy C88 or E2 available for auditing purposes. MSS data will now be free to obtain and will be available online, so this may be the way in which auditing of declarations made on an importer’s behalf will have to be checked.

There will no longer be an entry number; each declaration will now have a unique MRN.

HMRC will introduce CDS in 3 stages:
1. A group of importers will start making declarations on CDS from August 2018
2. All importers will be able to use CDS from November 2018
3. Exporters will be able to use CDS at a later date

There will be limitations on usage for the first declarations from August. Details are available from the HMRC website here

The August amendments to the printed tariff should contain the details of how to complete the various data sets.

Please contact us for further information.