Inverness Chamber International

Support to grow your business overseas. Be part of the global network.

Inverness Chamber International has been specifically designed to help you take advantage of export opportunities to grow your business. It is ideal for companies at all stages of the export journey - whether new to exporting, an experienced exporter or just exploring your options, then Inverness Chamber of Commerce can help. Follow the links to the right or the bottom of the page to find out more about our services.

Real business support to achieve your global ambitions.

To find out more, call the Inverness Chamber International Trade Helpline on 01463 228387 or visit http://exportbritain.org.uk/services/ 

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International News

Highlands and Islands entrepreneurs scoop £5,000

9th December 2016

Entrepreneurs on board Entrepreneurial Spark Powered by Royal Bank of Scotland’s unique Virtual Accelerator won £5,000 at an awards ceremony in Inverness last night, Wednesday 7th December.

To celebrate the success of entrepreneurs (aka ‘Chiclets’) on board the programme, Entrepreneurial Spark, the world’s largest free business accelerator, welcomed over 40 businesses to its Entrepreneuring Awards.

For the full story click here

Impact on VAT for imports and exports following Brexit

25th August 2016

Imports and exports

What will be the significant changes caused by the UK leaving the EU?

Imports and exports refer only to supplies of goods outside of the UK, and currently, outside of the EU. The major change is that goods moved to and from the EU will be treated as imports and exports. Thus, all the duty and VAT rules that apply to imports (or exports) will apply to goods moving in and out of the EU — see below for supplies of services.

Will duty rates change?

Currently, the EU sets duty rates charged on imports. When the UK leaves the EU, it can set its own duty rates. Duty rates may not move markedly in the short term. If rates are increased, it is possible that other countries will increase the duties charged to the UK.

Will duty rates charged by other countries on UK exports change?

Again, these may not change significantly in the short term. Rates will be subject to trade negotiations. As the EU has had responsibility for trade negotiations the UK has few, if any, trade negotiations. This may make it difficult for the UK in the early years to come to trade agreements (particularly free-trade agreements) with other countries.

Will valuation rules, duty reliefs and suspension regimes change?

It is not expected that there will be significant changes to these. Some rules, such as valuation rules, are determined by the World Trade Organization and are independent of the EU.

Will the import document C88 still be used for imports?

The C88, Single Administrative Document, is an EU document that is used for imports into all EU countries. A replacement form will be necessary, although there is no reason why this should not be very similar if not identical to the current import document. It is not expected that import procedures will change significantly, but some may be necessary.

EU supplies of goods

What duty rate will apply to supplies of goods to and from the EU?

Currently, no duty is charged on the supply of goods to or from the EU. It is not known what duties, if any, will be applied. This will be one of the major areas of negotiation between the EU and the UK. Options include, no duties being applied, using the current duty rates that the EU applies to third party countries, or some other variation. Undoubtedly, many will be hoping for no duty to be applied, but others may want duties to be applied to protect UK industries (or in the EU to protect EU industries).

Will it be necessary to complete Intrastats forms after Brexit?

Intrastats are used to gather information about the transfer of goods between the EU Member States. As the UK will no longer be in the EU, there will no longer be any need for Intrastats. The information that was gathered by these forms will be collected using the replacement import and export documents (the forms that will replace the C88 forms used for imports and exports currently).

Will the triangulation facility for supplies to third-party customers still be available?

Triangulation is an administrative easement to allow the single market to operate where goods are supplied to one customer in another Member State, but are immediately supplied to another customer in another Member State. Without this easement it would be required to register for VAT in the Member State of the first customer. Triangulation is not available to businesses that are not established in the EU. It is assumed that following exit from the EU, the UK supplier will be required to register in each country where supplies are made. This could cause a significant increase in administrative burdens. It will not impact businesses that sell goods into the EU and the customer takes possession of the goods. It will only be an issue where goods are sold on to another customer, or goods are diverted from a previous sale to a second customer.

Airlines' battery ban could disrupt world trade

23rd February 2016

The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has imposed an interim ban from 1 April 2016 on the carriage of all shipments of lithium-ion batteries. This will remain in force until the ICAO agrees a new lithium-ion battery packaging performance standard.

The decision to ban lithium-ion batteries being carried as cargo on passenger aircraft has been described as disappointing by the Global Shippers’ Forum (GSF) as it goes against previous recommendations and does not address the wider problem of undeclared battery shipments or low-quality counterfeits.

Indeed, Alex Veitch, GSF Head of Policy, has gone further and said: "The outright ban on passenger aircraft will cause a major disruption to the global supply chain for essential products vital to international trade."

ICAO working groups are unlikely to agree a new lithium-ion battery packaging performance standard until 2018 or possibly later because of the need for further research work by the Organisation and its decision-making procedures.

The GSF argues that ICAO should investigate the potential of using screening equipment to detect batteries. This approach would enable airlines to be certain about the lithium-ion batteries carried on their aircraft, allowing them to spot those that have not been declared.

Feasibility tests on screening carried out by the UK Civil Aviation Authority have been successful, and for safety reasons, the GSF wants the ICAO to explore the benefits of the wider adoption of this technology, arguing that it could lead to revised standards to require such screening equipment at airports.

The GSF also favours the more proportionate measures recommended by ICAO’s own expert dangerous goods panel last October which included a proposal to allow the shipment on passenger aircraft if the batteries are only charged to up to 30% of their maximum, and a limit of one package per consignment for certain types of battery.

Click here to read the full story (Guardian.com)