New post-Brexit restrictions come into force today. Find out what the products in question are – Executive Digest

From this Tuesday, the second phase of the UK's new Brexit border controls on food imports from the EU will begin – three years after the UK left the bloc's single market and eight years after it voted to leave the EU.

The first phase of Britain's new 'Border Target Operating Model' (BDOM), which requires additional certification, came into effect on January 31. The second phase will introduce physical testing of so-called “medium risk” animals, plants and plant products – such as fresh and frozen meat, fish, cheese, eggs, dairy products and some cut flowers and seeds.

This Tuesday sees the arrival of new duties imposed by the British government on importers bringing goods through the Port of Dover and the Eurotunnel. The government estimates that so-called public user fees will cover the costs of its new regulations and systems.

The UK government has highlighted that it will take a “pragmatic approach” to introducing checks and does not expect significant disruptions to imports. The new checks are essential to prevent diseases and pests from entering Britain and will level the playing field for UK exporters.

In April 2022, the United Kingdom cited the war in Ukraine and rising fuel prices as reasons for postponing the planned introduction of red tape and additional customs controls for a fourth time after 'Brexit'. The decision is expected to enable annual cost savings of up to 1,000 million pounds (1,140 million euros) for British companies.

In January 2021, restrictions on imports of high-risk animals, animal products, plants and plant products from the EU were introduced. However, sanitary and phytosanitary protection (SPS) certificates for fresh food, especially of animal origin, are still required, nor are physical checks carried out at the border. Importers can provide the documents later.

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Instead, the EU immediately introduced post-Brexit customs controls once the transition period ended and the Trade and Cooperation Agreement entered into force on 1 January 2021.

The origins of British delay include delays in building the necessary infrastructure, logistical problems in global distribution networks post-Covid-19 pandemic, and companies' reluctance to adjust to 'Brexit'.

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