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Reducing Multiple Links in the Supply Chain for Customs & Transport


Some businesses may choose to use an agent to handle their customs matters, if for example, they do not have the resources to do this themselves. A customs agent, sometimes known as a customs broker, is a person or organisation that handles your customs clearances on your behalf, either through direct or indirect representation. They must have written consent from you to act as your representative, to prove they are authorised.

As well as a customs agent, you can also use a freight forwarder to handle your customs as well as your transport. You will need to provide all the details of your shipment to enable them to complete the necessary customs entry, but the benefit is that you will only have to deal with one contact rather than having multiple links in the supply chain.

Incoterms 2020 Sheet


Incoterms Explained by KMB Shipping. Our team of Custom Clearance Agents have answered your most Frequently Asked Questions:

What is an EORI Number?

An Economic Operators Registration and Identification number, or EORI as its commonly known, is a unique number assigned to a company that imports or exports goods. It is required to complete your customs entry and if you operate in more than one country you will need to apply for an EORI for each country your business is registered in.

What is a CPC Code?

A Customs Procedure Code (CPC) is completed at export as well as import. The CPC is based on a 2 digit community code which identifies a customs procedure, eg removal from warehouse, entry to free zone, and export under Outward Processing Relief (OPR). The CPC is built up into a 7 digit code from this.

The Difference Between NETT & Gross Weight

Nett weight refers to the weight of the product itself, excluding the packaging. Gross weight is the total weight of the shipment including any packaging.

Why do I need to Declare the Country of Origin?

The country of origin of goods imported and exported are vital to help identify those goods which are eligible for lower or nil customs duty.

What is a PVA?

Postponed VAT Accounting is a way for UK VAT registered businesses to account for import VAT after Brexit. It allows businesses to record the import VAT on their VAT return rather than at the time the goods enter the UK.

The Difference Between Inventory Linked & Non-Inventory Linked

Inventory linking ensures no goods can leave the port until the customs process is completed. At an inventory linked port you can access the port record and present customs entries against it. At a non-inventory linked port you cannot access the port record; you simply submit entries to customs and advise the driver/port of the details.

What is a Commodity Code?

A commodity code is a sequence of numbers that determines the customs duties and other levies on goods that are moved internationally. The commodity code is required to complete a customs entry.

What are Incoterms?

These are internationally recognised shipping terms which lay out the responsibilities and liabilities (such as duties, taxes and insurance) of both the seller and buyer at any point of the logistical process.

Licensing of my Goods

Licences are required to import and export goods of certain categories, such as goods of animal origin, controlled or hazardous goods or agricultural goods. You can find more details about export licence here or import licences here.

What is a T1/TAD?

A T1 is a transport document used for when transported goods pass through other European countries on the way to the destination country. It prevents the seller or buyer (depending on the incoterms – see above) from having to pay duties and taxes in each country the goods pass through, only in the destination country.

What is AEO Status?

Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) status is a globally recognised accreditation that demonstrates a business adheres to the highest standards of practice in the global supply chain, in relation to customs and/or security practices. It is assessed and granted by HMRC in the UK, and using an AEO approved supplier for your customs entries can offer the following benefits:

  • Increased Access to Priority Clearance
  • A Reduction in Administration
  • Reductions/Waivers of Deferment and Comprehensive Guarantees
  • Fewer Delays
  • Improved Security in your Supply Chain
  • Faster Access to Other Customs Authorisations
What is a Duty Deferment Account?

Duty deferment is a method of allowing businesses to control their cash flow by paying for customs duties and import VAT by monthly direct debit instead of all in one go when the goods enter the UK. A business may choose to open a deferment account themselves, or may choose to use their forwarder’s/agent’s deferment account (which usually comes at a minimum cost or % rate of the total duty costs incurred).


Over the decades, we have proudly developed a reputation for professional, efficient and friendly shipping services. From first contact to delivery, our dedicated account handlers provide a seamless experience for all our customers.