The UK needs a new team of customs experts to ensure unfettered post-transition trade continues between Great Britain and Northern Ireland, according to a prominent trade leader.
From 1 January 2021, under the terms of the Northern Ireland Protocol, traders in the province must follow EU Customs Union rules, as well as new UK regulations, to move goods between GB and NI.
To address the added administrative burden this will cause, firms in Northern Ireland will need “expert support”, according to Marco Forgione, director general of the Institute of Export & International Trade (IOE&IT).
“We need to support NI firms, and GB companies trading with NI, to continue trading in an unfettered way,” he said. “We have a duty to provide the expert support needed to ensure firms are not weighed down by new documentary requirements from the end of the transition period.”
IOE&IT to recruit experts
To support NI companies, the IOE&IT is recruiting 35 consultants to provide specialist customs and trade knowledge.
These customs experts will support the delivery of the Trader Support Service (TSS) announced by government last month.
The £200m service is being launched to ensure NI firms are not burdened by new customs requirements post-transition and could see the government effectively “acting as a customs agent on behalf of businesses”, according to the BBC.
Applications are open
The IOE&IT opened applications for the 35 consultant positions this week, saying the experts are required to have knowledge covering “the trader, carrier and intermediary communities in Northern Ireland and Great Britain.”
The consultants will support firms both virtually and face-to-face, and candidates will need to show they have at least seven years’ experience in relevant customs and trade roles. A professional customs qualification is also preferred.
For more information about applying for the new positions, please visit: https://tradersupport.co.uk/