Helping cross-border traders prepare for Brexit

The end of the transition period is looming and NI businesses are faced with continued uncertainty in the absence of a Free Trade Agreement.  So what should firms do now?

Deirdre Maguire, Manager of InterTradeIreland’s Brexit Advisory Service, outlines the key steps that NI businesses need to take now to prepare for the new trading arrangements in January 2021.

However daunting it seems, some of the most tangible actions you can take now are found on our 5 Step Checklist.

Supply Chain

  • It will be important that you understand your cross-border supply chain, and the trade routes of your product. In doing this you will understand if there are additional customs requirements in your supply chain. Find out what’s needed to complete customs formalities and decide who will complete them.
  • Speak to your suppliers and to your logistic providers, ask them if they are prepared for the changes and if they need anything additional from you.  For example if you have GB trade in your supply chain you will need to know what the commodity codes of your products are.  If you wanted to do one thing this is a worthwhile exercise, InterTradeIreland have a wealth of information on customs including how to find your commodity codes.  View our guide to find out more
  • Consider the impact of change in the exchange rate and supplier payment schedules, and make sure you review your contracts to protect your supply chain.  Read more


  • You will need to register for an EORI Number. Find out more here
  • You will need to identify your Commodity Code as outlined in the example above, which you can do using our guide.
  • If your business is based in Northern Ireland you can access key actions via UK Gov Transition Site and register for the Trader Support Service.  If you move goods between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK, the Trader Support Service will guide you through any changes due to the implementation of the Northern Ireland Protocol.  Read more


  • Make sure you are clear about how the EU Settlement Scheme affects you, your business and your employees.  Our Guide to People tells you all you need to know.  You will also find details on the post-Brexit immigration scheme, salary caps, what’s changing in 2021 and more.


If your business involves the transfer of Personal Data across the border, you’ll need to ensure sufficient safeguards are in place so you can continue to transfer data after the transition period. This may include introducing Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCs) to your data arrangements.


You will need to stay up to speed as changes emerge during the transition period.  We are continually updating our information as the negotiations continue, and you can register for our updates here. including funding and Supply Chain supports.

Receive Brexit funding worth £2,000/€2,250

Voucher support is also available to help you understand the implications of the new trading relationship and its impact on your cross-border business.  InterTradeIreland’s Planning Voucher provides 100% financial support up to £2,000/€2,250 (inclusive of VAT) towards professional advice tailored to your business to help you to identify Brexit exposure and to plan. Find out more

Wherever you are with your Brexit plans, InterTradeIreland will keep you informed as changes emerge and continue to offer support and advice to cross-border traders via our dedicated Brexit Advisory Service team. Find out more at or get in touch by emailing [email protected]

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