Date: 11.03.2021

Brexit simplification offers VAT cashflow benefits not only for EU shipments but also for non-EU shipments

Postponed VAT Accounting (PVA) was devised ahead of Brexit, to avoid the negative cash flow impact of an additional VAT bill at the EU/UK border.

Since 1st January 2021, businesses registered for VAT that import goods into the UK from anywhere in the world – and not just the EU –  can use postponed VAT, to account for the VAT on their periodic (usually quarterly) VAT Return, rather than paying it immediately at the border.

If your business already imports from outside the EU, PVA will offer you significant cash flow benefits, because it removes the need to account for the import VAT typically due, and to pay your agent for using their deferment account, if you don’t have your own facility directly with HMRC, at the time of importation and customs clearance.

PVA is compulsory if custom declarations submissions are currently deferred and optional in most other cases.

Providing you are VAT registered, no specific approval or accreditation is required to use PVA, but you – or your agent instructed in writing – must select PVA on your customs declaration.

HMRC will produce a Monthly Postponed Import VAT Statement (MPIVS), showing customs declarations for the previous month. This statement provides you with the figures required to enter in the VAT return.

If customs declarations are delayed, the import VAT must be estimated using the information on your EIDR or other commercial import records. Note the EIDR process is due to end on 30th June 2021 and full customs declarations will be required at time of import from The BLOC.

Estimates can be adjusted on the next VAT return, when a deferred declaration is submitted and the actual amount of import VAT/tax due is calculated and recorded on the MPIVS for the month the declaration has been submitted.

PVA is not limited to only EU imports and you need to press your agent, in the strongest terms, if they have failed to advise you that it can also be used for imports from the rest of the world – particularly if they have been charging you a fee for making VAT payments.

Metro are totally committed to driving our customers success and helping them enhance the ability to trade and grow internationally.

We think this benefit should be shared with our customers immediately, because we act in their interest and not in ours.

For further information if you have not already taken this development into your own import processes, or to discuss your situation in greater specific detail, please contact Chris Carlile or Grant Liddell or any member of our ever growing experienced brokerage team.