The Belgian customs authorities have made an important change to their definition of an ‘exporter’ in reference to Box 2 of the Single Administrative Document (SAD).
A key condition to becoming an exporter of EU goods for customs purposes is to be established in an EU customs territory and also to hold a valid EORI number. When we are talking about establishment, for these purposes, the legal definition of this is that an exporter must have a ‘permanent’ establishment in a customs territory of the EU for it to be considered an exporter from the EU.
The Belgian customs authorities have confirmed that non-EU established entities, i.e. those with no permanent establishment in a customs territory of the EU cannot act as an exporter, and therefore, should no longer be mentioned in Box 2 of the SAD. This is also the case even if they are using indirect representation.
It is important to know that the PDLA system (Belgian paperless Customs and Excise system) will not reject an export declaration if a non-established entity has been mentioned in Box 2 of the SAD and this will not show up any errors. However, it will be important tor those companies that are affected that they review their current processes to ensure they remain compliant and avoid any potential penalties.
Should the UK to leave the EU in October without a deal, then these rules would become applicable to UK businesses.
If you are affected by this change, please contact Accordance to discuss this in further detail and how we can assist.