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Minister Burke urges Irish exporters to get ready for new UK import controls

Minister of State for European Affairs, Peter Burke TD, has urged Irish exporters to take all steps necessary to prepare for new UK import controls set to be introduced at the end of October.

Speaking after recent visits to Dublin Port and to Westmeath-based exporters, Mergon, Minister Burke said:

“I have seen first-hand in recent days how the UK remains a key trading partner for Ireland and how vital supply chains on both islands are underpinned by strong partnerships between Irish and UK companies.

“With the UK introducing new import controls on 31 October, it is essential that all Irish businesses who export to the UK talk to everyone in their supply chains regarding changes that they may need to make.  Early and full engagement on these new UK customs and sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) requirements can help avoid unnecessary costs and delays.”

The Minister’s call follows the publication last April by the UK Government of its Draft Border Target Operating Model (TOM) that sets out plans for new rules for importing goods to the UK, including from Ireland. The final detail of the new UK requirements is expected to be published by the UK Government shortly.

These new UK controls will have implications for all Irish exports to the United Kingdom, (excluding Northern Ireland).

In particular exports from the agri-food sector will be subject to pre-notification and accompanied, in some cases, by export health and phytosanitary certificates.  Other changes will see the introduction of ferry-boarding formalities and the end of the delayed lodgement of customs declarations. Hauliers who move goods through UK ports that employ the goods vehicle movement service (GVMS) need to register to use the service.

Furthermore, as TOM will be implemented in several stages between October 2023 and October 2024, all those involved in moving goods to and through the United Kingdom (including those using the UK Landbridge) should check the UK Government website as further updates are made available.

Due to the Northern Ireland Protocol/Windsor Framework, there will be no changes for anyone moving goods between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Recalling the close cooperation between Government and business that has been a central feature of Ireland’s approach to Brexit, Minister Burke confirmed that:

“Government departments will work with sectors impacted by these new UK controls and there is a range of advice on our Brexit website ( 

“Due to the provisions of the Windsor Framework, these new procedures will have no impact on moving goods on the island of Ireland and that the new formalities will not be required for trade between Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Notes to Editors

  • In April 2023, the UK published its Draft Border Targeted Operating Model which provides for the introduction of new UK border controls in three phases; 31 October 2023, 31 January 2024 and 31 October 2024.
  • All three phases will have significant impacts for Irish exporters.
  • The UK Government is due to publish the Final Borger Target Operating Model shortly, which will contain further information on the new UK controls. Further information can be found on the UK Government Website here: The Border Target Operating Model: Draft for Feedback - GOV.UK (
  • Due to the separate arrangements under the Windsor Framework (Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland), these changes will not apply to trade on the island of Ireland.
  • Further information on

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