Export documents and Brexit – update for CO and ATA Carnet users

This page provides an update on the issue of certain documents – specifically Certificates of Origin (CO) and ATA Carnets – used in international trade:

  • In the period between now and the end of 2020 (1 Feb to 31 Dec is termed the transition period)
  • From 1 January 2021 onwards.

Between now and the end of this year

Certificates of Origin – namely EU-format CO, Movement Certificates (EUR and AT.R, the latter being for goods traded with Turkey) and CO for goods with Arab League destinations – will continue to be used for this period exactly as they are now, and in the same format.

Similarly ATA Carnets – the ‘passport for goods’ being temporarily moved cross border for the purpose of being shown at trade fairs or exhibitions, or for professional equipment and samples – will be issued and operate in exactly the same way as now.

The basis for the above is that during the transition period the UK will effectively be in the EU for trade purposes at least. This also means that the use of the EUR Movement Certificate will remain relevant for goods shipped to all the countries with whom the EU has a free trade agreement where origin rules are satisfied.

More information on Certificates of Origin.
More information on Movement Certificates.
More information on ATA Carnets.

From 1 January 2021 onwards

Much will depend on the trade arrangements which the UK and the EU will be negotiating during the course of this year.

In preparation however for whatever is concluded it is worth noting that the following is in train.

Certificates of Origin

A UK CO has been designed and approved by the Department for International Trade as a replacement for the current EU-format CO, in accordance with the relevant international convention, and will be issued automatically post-December 31.

Exports to Arab League countries which usually require an Arab-British Certificate of Origin will be unaffected by Brexit and there will be no change in format of the document.

Movement Certificate EUR)

It is understood that a slightly revised EUR form has been prepared by government and will be ready for use from 01 January 2021 where existing EU agreements have been rolled over.

Currently this is the case with Andean Countries (Colombia, Ecuador, Peru), Cariforum trade bloc (Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago), Central America (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama), Chile, ESA countries (Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles, Zimbabwe), Faroe Islands, Georgia, Iceland, Israel, Lebanon, Liechtenstein, Morocco, Norway, Pacific States (Fiji, Papua New Guinea), Palestine, Southern African Customs Union and Mozambique, South Korea, Switzerland, and Tunisia. More roll-overs are expected to be announced by the end of the year.

In other markets where Free Trade Agreement markets, if there is no roll over then the EUR would not be appropriate though the buyer might call for a non-preferential CO.

In other markets where Free Trade Agreement markets, if there is no roll over then the EUR would not be appropriate though the buyer might call for a non-preferential CO.

Movement Certificates A.TR.

No change is envisaged for this document.

ATA Carnets

ATA Carnets will be amended as documents to reflect the UK’s status as no longer being an EU member.  It is anticipated that this document will appropriate for temporary shipments to the EU 27 from 01 January 2021 on the basis, among other factors, that the UK has signed the relevant international conventions both as the UK and en bloc through the EU.

Important note

All the above information relating to shipments after 31 December 2020 is dependent on what agreement emerges between the UK and the EU.

In the event of no agreement being concluded and a reversion to WTO rules, the above is however a good starting point for likely procedures.

LCCI will update these pages as more clarification is made available.


For further information on export documents issued by LCCI contact Davor McKinley.