A very good question indeed, and a question which was raised more frequently as we approach the end of 2020. Customs formalities are time-consuming, and differ depending on the complexity of each case. It is not just a case of submitting a customs entry. Different commodities, different geography – each has its own particulars which differ in complexity.
By way of geographical examples, we have already discovered that Portuguese and Greek customs charges are substantial due to their current systems and local regulations. And in respect of commodities, licensable goods and, in particular products of animal origin, become far more complicated and costly.
To get through this, we have invested in various technologies to reduce the impact of time. These alone have been expensive in their own right, but until we actually got ‘stuck in’ this year, we have only been able to estimate our true cost. As with all interactions with our customers, we tailor our services accordingly. Customs documentation charges shall be no different in this respect.
So we have decided to start with ‘interim’ charges. After the first couple or three months, once we have a clearer picture, we shall re-assess the impact and vary such charges as appropriate, and as always, by client agreement. Our aim is not to make customs processes a profit centre. We make our profit on the freight we move (hopefully!). As long as we cover our costs, and any additional overheads (such as new employees, work time, for example), that suits us.