HMRC grants to help your business with customs declarations


Nigel Roberts

Nigel Roberts

VAT Director and Head of VAT & Duty


Completing custom declarations is a complex, specialist area. HMRC has provided a list of agents that can help with this area on their website, but they’re also offering funding to businesses to help towards the cost of recruiting or training an in-house specialist and developing the required IT infrastructure to submit customs declarations.

Businesses eligible for funding

The funding on offer covers recruitment, training and IT to help your business to complete customs declarations and trader-training to understand customs.

Your business will be eligible to apply for funding as long as it’s not previously failed to meet its tax obligation, and your business is in the process of being established in the UK, or your business has been established in the UK for at least 12 months before submitting the funding application or you hold Authorised Economic Operator status.

In addition to this your businesses must meet one of the descriptions below:

  • Complete or intend to complete customs declarations on behalf of your clients
  • Be an importer or exporter and complete, or intend to complete, declarations internally for your own goods
  • Be an organisation which recruits, trains and places apprentices in businesses to undertake customs declarations
  • Trade with the EU and do not intend to complete your own declarations, but want to undertake customs training

What the funding can be used for

The HMRC website details the full list of areas you can put the funding towards, this includes the salary costs of new employees (who start on or after 12 June 2020), recruited to complete custom declarations. The funding can also go towards the salary costs of employees who have been redeployed from other areas of you business to complete custom declarations and IT equipment needed.

Apply on HMRC’s website now

The scheme is open until June 2021, on a first come, first served basis. Payment time once application is approved is around a month

HMRC has set aside £85 million in funding for businesses across the UK but applications are coming in thick and fast. We advise you apply without delay if this is an area you need assistance with. Full details are available on HMRC’s website here.