Barrington Freight is one of the leading freight forwarding companies in the UK, dealing with a wide range of importation matters for all sorts of commodity classes. The firm deals with medical items, wholesale goods, automotive parts, clothing, and gym equipment among others, for example. An important part of what they do as an importation specialist is to assist companies that procure books and paper from overseas, too.

After all, there are numerous reasons that both businesses and academic institutions might want to import books and paper from overseas destinations to the UK. You might work for a publishing house, for example, and want manuscripts that have been printed in the EU or North America. A company that is registering a patent may also need assistance with importation documentation. There again, Barrington Freight’s professionals in freight forwarding have also been asked by schools and even university faculties to help import students’ textbooks in bulk before. Whatever the sort of books, manuscripts, pamphlets, or other paper-based products you deal with, getting help from a freight forwarding firm can help enormously. Why?

To begin with, importing books and paper from the European Union is no longer as straightforward as it used to be. Although you can still order copies of books for personal use from EU suppliers without needing to go through all of the importation steps required by HMRC, this is not the case any longer for all bulk and commercial purchases. As has been widely reported, Great Britain left the EU’s single market at the start of 2021. From then, the UK has become what is known as a third country to all the European states within the single market. 

However, the UK decided not to impose the sorts of customs checks that are needed for most classes of goods from that date. This is set to change at the start of 2022, so any business, charity or other organization that sources books and so on from the EU will need to make full customs declarations where they might have been used to avoiding such procedures before.

In other words, just like organizations that import books and paper from countries like China and the United States, those which import from EU countries will need a government gateway user ID and password or their orders will likely be impounded on arrival into a UK port. This is so you can obtain an EORI number which is a legal requirement for importing books and paper – as well as other classes of goods – in England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland. 

Once you have this, you’ll still need to declare your imports properly, however. In short, this means using the right commodity codes HMRC sets out. With paper-based products, you have to know which is the correct one. For instance, code 49111090 should be used for things like brochures, guidebooks, and promotional posters while code 37052000 covers items such as coloring books, newspapers, and school exercise books.

Barrington Freight can guide you through this process, some of which can be mystifying to importers who haven’t been used to such procedures in the past. However, it doesn’t end there because, like all good freight forwarding firms, Barrington Freight can also help with VAT. This really boils down to how and when you can lower your operational costs by claiming VAT relief for your imports. As such, their invaluable advice can often pay for itself.