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UK delays post-Brexit border checks on food for fifth time

LONDON, March 14, 2017 (Xinhua) — Photo taken on March 14, 2017 shows the “Big Ben” and the UK flag in central London, Britain. The British upper house of the Parliament passed the Brexit Bill Monday night, clearing the last hurdle for the governmen. Image Source: IANS News

London, Aug 30 : The government of the UK has announced a fifth delay to the introduction of post-Brexit checks on food, plant and animal products from the European Union (EU).

The Cabinet Office published its Border Target Operating Model on Tuesday, setting out the timetable for the implementation of the checks, which aim to “better protect the UK against biosecurity threats and create a world-class border system”, Xinhua news agency reported.

According to the Office, health certification for imports of medium-risk animal products, plants, plant products and high-risk food (and feed) of non-animal origin from the EU will now begin on January 31, 2024.

This means that the introduction has been delayed by a further three months from late October, as previously planned.

Meanwhile, documentary and risk-based identity and physical checks on the above-mentioned products will be introduced in April 2024. Safety and security declarations for EU imports will be implemented in October 2024.

The revised timetable aims to “give stakeholders additional time to prepare for the new checks”, said the Cabinet Office.

“Our Border Target Operating Model will ensure more efficient trading for businesses, protect against biosecurity threats and further crackdown on illegal imports such as firearms and drugs,” said Lucy Neville-Rolfe, Minister of State at the Cabinet Office.

The Office expects the impact of border controls on food inflation to be minor, predicted at less than 0.2 per cent across three years.

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