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Alcohol Exporters: Customs Requirements

Volume 717: debated on Tuesday 28 June 2022

2. Whether his Department is taking steps to reduce Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs paperwork for alcohol exporters. (900758)

The 2025 UK border strategy sets out the Government’s vision for the UK border to be the most effective in the world. We are investing £180 million to build a UK single trade window, which will streamline how traders share information with the Government, making it as straightforward as possible for business to comply with customs requirements.

We all understand the need to protect revenue and to prevent fraud, but some alcohol exporting companies find that their exports are being hindered by HMRC’s refusal to accept standard invoicing as proof of tax paid. HMRC, in requiring additional letters of confirmation, is therefore causing companies considerable hindrance to their exports. Will the Minister agree to meet me to find a way forward that can both protect revenue and facilitate exports?

I would be very happy to meet the hon. Member and look at the specific issues that she has raised, but I reassure her that HMRC is currently in a programme to ensure that traders have to fill in fewer forms and that forms are prepopulated, so that customs can be streamlined for the trader.

Does the Minister agree that a trade agreement with India would be a huge boost to our exporters, including our alcohol exporters?

The Government are very much committed to trade agreements across the globe and would welcome a trade agreement with India.