News article

Brexit: Get a UK EORI number to trade within the EU

6 February 2020


From 1 January 2021, UK businesses trading with the EU will need a UK EORI number to continue trading

From 1 January 2021, businesses will need an EORI number that starts with GB to move goods in or out of the UK. If you already have an EORI number that starts with GB, you can continue to use it. It will be 12 digits long. If you’re registered for VAT it will include your VAT registration number.

Who needs an EORI number

You’ll need to have a UK issued Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number if you:

  • are a business established in the UK
  • will import or export goods with the EU after the UK leaves the EU

If you have an EORI number that does not start with GB, you must get one if you are going to trade goods into or out of the UK and before 1 January 2021, the date when the new rules take effect. 

Why you need an EORI number

Having an EORI number allows you to:

  • trade goods into or out of the UK
  • submit declarations using software (or to give to your agent to make these declarations on your behalf)
  • apply to be authorised for customs simplifications and procedures

Who does not need an EORI number

You'll not usually need an EORI number if you’ll only:

  • provide services
  • move goods between Northern Ireland and Ireland

Before you apply

You will need to provide some specific details related to your type of business when applying for an EORI number.

If you’re VAT-registered

You’ll need your VAT registration number and the name under which your business is registered for VAT.

If you’re not VAT-registered

You’ll need the following:

  • an address in the United Kingdom
  • an email address
  • your date of birth
  • your National Insurance number

If your businesses is a partnership

You’ll need the following information for each individual partner:

  • date of birth
  • your National Insurance number

If your business is registered as a company

You’ll need the following:

  • Company Registration Number
  • company incorporation date (the date your company came into being)
  • country of incorporation, for example, the United Kingdom

If you’re a registered charity

You’ll need the following:

  • your registered charity number
  • country of registration (for example, the United Kingdom)

If your business has a parent or holding company

Your parent or holding company must apply for you.

How to apply

There are different ways to apply depending on whether you’re:

What happens after you apply for an EORI number?

You’ll get your EORI number by email. If you’ve not received the email you should check your spam folder.

Once you have your UK EORI number it can take 48 hours before you can use it to make declarations.

When you receive your EORI number, always use it when contacting HMRC about customs.

Contact the EORI team at HMRC to get help.