28. June 2021

Interview with Arne Mielken

Arne Mielken is a leading global trade professional in the UK and the EU and Managing Director of Customs Manager Ltd. He is an accredited customs & export control practitioner and certified classification specialist. He has worked with customs and trade authorities in the EU and the UK for over a decade and he continues to be actively involved in the development of EU and UK customs policy and legislation through his membership in the EU’s Trade Contact Group (TCG) and the UK’s Joint Customs Consultancy Committee (JCCC). He is an accomplished consultant and trainer having managed Customs Duties & Export Controls teams in several firms including Grant Thornton and Deloitte. He was the Vice President of The Institute of Export & International Trade from 2015-2020, and currently is a Board Member of the Export Control Profession. Mr. Mielken is also a Certified Classification Specialist, public speaker, and an accredited trainer for Incoterms ® 2020.

1. Due to BREXIT, all shipments between the UK and the EU now require customs documentation on departure and arrival. We can certainly say, that delays in the supply chain will be caused due to the necessary customs control and clearance. How are the companies coping with new rules, a few months into 2021?
Companies will find it challenging to cope with the new rules except for those companies who seek professional support in streamlining their import and export activities.
Without a doubt, the delays at the customs due to the control and clearance will impact businesses, raise costs, impact cash flow and production. As it is, we are seeing a crisis in the shipping industry today where the availability of equipment and containers are impacted due to the port congestions, but also with a sudden increase in volumes traded between EU and The UK after the lockdown, the cost of transport is already much higher than the pre-covid era.
It makes it that much more important for UK companies to look to control what is in their hands, this should be the strategy of all the businesses today who are helpless against market forces, economic disbalances, and health and sanitary restrictions.
Some of the things which a company can control are: ensuring they have obtained the required permits, licenses, and export certificates, plan your shipments through designated ports, acquire an authorized exporter status for minimal customs control and knowing revised filing procedures among many others.
2. What services do you provide to companies to keep their goods moving smoothly after BREXIT?
From making strategic decisions to developing your customs and global trade capabilities, we are here to help. We provide a range of services and multilingual support in English, German, French, and Spanish.
To sum up how we will ensure our customers’ goods move smoothly after Brexit is with any or a combination of the following three services.

A. Advice and Support for all UK customs and trade matters, legal and commercial.

B. Multilingual on-demand training based on your needs, we currently cover subjects such as EU-UK Rules of Origin, documentation and obtaining certificates required after Brexit, customs procedures, and filing requirements among many others.

C. Trade Intelligence or Professional Legislative Monitoring, to help UK businesses stay up to date with the latest customs and global regulatory changes. This process is time-consuming and complex, hence Customs Manager will be the right partner to get that information to you exactly when you need it.

With this service, we can ensure that your goods move smoothly without falling behind the constantly evolving space of Global Trade and especially that of the UK and EU.

3. Would you be able to provide a summary and insights into the necessities and documentation required for the business to continue trading as in importer/exporter between the EU and the UK?
An importer/exporter needs to be aware of the documentation and procedures required for conducting their business smoothly, some of the important points are:

1. To register for an EORI number

2. Check if you need a license for your goods, or if there are import restrictions.

3. Establish the origin of your goods, there are several criteria to follow if you want the goods to qualify for lower duties.

4. Know how to declare your export to customs, understand the new system.
5. Identify the relevant documents to submit to the authorities

a. Commercial invoice

b. Certificates of origin

c. Licenses and certificates (such as for food and plants)

d. The Export or Transit Accompanying Document (EAD) issued by customs

e. Combined customs and safety and security declarations

4. According to the latest news, it seems that the trucking industry is quite affected by the new rules and some companies are spending between 3% – 5% more time at the borders, than before. Do you think that the comprehensive training of employees could help to handle the UK’s new trading relationship more effectively?
Training the employees is a proven method to optimize your resources and reduce costs, especially in a time as turbulent and unsure as now. UK’s new trading relationship is soundly based on adopting new methods and procedures and the authorities themselves have put out generic materials for educating importers and exporters. Customs Manager goes deeper than that, it analyses your needs, challenges and requirements, and provides a customized approach to educating and training the right people in your organization to help you place your company in a very good position against the red tape, delays, and all types of trade barriers, such as additional time spent at borders.

5. What is your opinion about positioning WOF EXPO in the Central and Eastern Europe region?
Although Western Europe has the biggest and busiest ports in Europe, the potential for growth and expansion lies right in the eastern and central Europe region. With a stable legislative, executive government and given the fact the countries are part of the European Union bloc, it is an extremely calculated decision to position WOF Expo in the Central and Eastern Europe region. 

Customs Manager Ltd builds the world’s largest community of empowered customs & global trade professionals through legislative monitoring, education and support to become inspiring business leaders. Their mission is crystal clear – Always up to date! Continuously learning! Always supported!