HMRC announced a delay to the implementation of the New Computerised Transit System Phase 5 (NCTS5) yesterday (9 October).
NCTS5, which will allow traders to amend any pre-lodged transit declarations made on goods moving within countries covered by the Common Transit Convention (CTC), was slated to enter operation on 16 November 2023.
In response to concerns from multiple countries that they would not be ready for the rollout, the CTC facilitated an extension which HMRC have opted to implement, pushing back the UK deadline for NCTS5-compliance to 1 July 2024.
Ahead of the CTC’s extension, several countries reported that making their internal systems NCTS5-compliant would take longer than the initial November deadline, largely due to the need for software development and subsequent testing alongside the new system.
HMRC’s Joint Customs Consultative Committee (JCCC) announced its decision to make use of the extension after receiving several petitions from industry that more time would be required.
A spokesperson for the committee wrote in a letter to stakeholders:
“From listening to the views of stakeholders, it is clear that there is now strong support for a later implementation date to give industry additional time to prepare.”
When completed, the upgrade will allow traders to amend any pre-lodged transit declarations made for countries covered by the CTC, which currently allows a 30-day window in which traders can lodge a declaration ahead of a goods movement.
The ability to update customs information such as EORI numbers, which traders may not already have access to, should allow admin to be carried out more efficiently.
HMRC is encouraging future NCTS5 users to continue using its Trader Test Environment, especially those developing software to support the upgrade.
The delay will not affect other system rollouts. Exporters will still need to move to the Customs Declaration Service by 30 March 2024, as scheduled.