HMRC CHIEF Replacement: CDS November 2017 update

Brexit & The Future of Customs

The House Of Commons Pubic Accounts Committee recently issued a report on Brexit & The Future of Customs. The committee heard from the senior management team of HM Revenue & Customs

Key points:

  • The CHIEF replacement, CDS is critical for Brexit. If it is not ready in time it would be “catastrophic”. Brexit uncertainty must not be used as an excuse to avoid scaling up CDS for the worst-case scenario now and a contingency must be in place by January 2019.


  • HMRC needs to do more to work with business affected by the move to CDS. It must not wait for the outcome of Brexit negotiations.


  • AEO “trusted-trader” status should be promoted to reduce admin burden on HMRC and trade.


  • CDS capacity should be 255 million declarations with CHIEF acting as a contingency.


  • Treasury funding to build the required CDS capacity and CHIEF contingency is not yet in place.


  • HMRC is currently managing an unsustainable amount of change.


It is clear that HMRC are under pressure to deliver CDS on time. All indicators right now are that it will be ready and the early stages of trade testing are already underway, however funding commitments to build Brexit “worst-case scenario” capacity and contingencies has not yet been agreed. The next few weeks will be critical.

Clearlight Customs provide expert AEO advice and support for business. Contact us on 01283 553099 to discuss your Customs needs.The full report can be read here:




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