Rules of Origin Guidance

One of the key areas where most traders are requesting support is around Rules of Origin, specially under the framework of the new EU-UK TCA.  We have compiled a series of resources which we hope can help exporters and importers to find the answers they need.  Although we also know the amount of information may be confusing at times and if you need expert support, please get in touch.

What are Rules of Origin?

Origin is essentially the economic nationality of goods. All internationally traded goods are required to have an origin when declared to customs at the point of import. Rules of origin enable to establish the origin of the goods. There are two types of origin: preferential and non-preferential.   Read more about the types of origin, cumulation and how traders can determine the origin of their goods by reading our blog here

Check your goods meet the rules of origin

Rules to establish the country of origin of imported and exported goods and to help identify those which qualify for lower or nil Customs Duty.  Read further guidance from government here

Get proof of origin for your goods
If you’re using a preference from a preference agreement or the Generalised Scheme of Preferences, you will need to prove the origin of your goods.  Read further guidance from government here
Check what 'proof of origin' you need when trading with the world
GM Chamber has done a summary of the current Trade Agreements that have been signed by the UK, and what proof of origin you need (e.g. Self-certification,  UK EUR, UK COO or other).  Please note this summary is based on the understanding of available guidance from the UK government and is correct as of Feb 2021.  Check the list here.
UK Trade Agreements
If you want more details behind Rules of Origin, cumulation principles and proof of origin for your specific commodity codes, we also recommend you visit periodically the UK Government website which provides a summary of the Trade Agreements which have been signed, are under negotiations and enter into partial or full force from 1st Jan 2021.
Using a suppliers’ declaration to support a proof of origin

Supplier declarations are used for UK/EU supplier in order to provide information regarding the origin of your good and thus preferential rates of duty between the UK and other countries can be claimed.  Read further guidance from government here

Need Certificates of Origin for preferential or non-preferential purposes?

If you need an UK EUR1, UK COOs or Arab Certificates of Origin, the Chamber can help.   Just visit our website to learn more about our documentation services.

Check your goods meet the Generalised Scheme of Preference rules of origin

Find the origin rules that your goods must meet to qualify for the Generalised Scheme of Preference (GSP).  Read further guidance from government here

List of goods covered by the rules of origin for various countries

Find out about the origin rules which apply to most goods for various countries.  Read further UK Government guidance here

EU-UK TCA - Detailed Guidance on Rules of Origin

The rules of origin requirements are some of the most important provisions that your business needs to understand and comply with, under the UK's deal with the EU. Read further UK Government Guidance here

Claiming preferential rates of duty between the UK and EU

How to claim preferential rates of duty on goods covered in the UK's deal with the EU and how to declare goods imported into the UK on your import declaration.  Read further UK Government Guidance here

Additional Resources & Guidance from BEIS on Rules of Origin for UK SMEs 
The new EU-UK TCA allows for full bilateral cumulation and tariff and quota free access for goods that qualify.  That means, goods need to comply with specific rules of origin as determined in the EU-UK TCA
EU Guidance for EU Companies on Rules of Origin
These is a compilation of guidance issued by the EU for EU companies related to customs and rules of origin:

Additional Resources
  • GMCC & Partners Webinars: has joined forces with a number of partners and has delivered various webinars focus on the new rules, including rules of origin.  Check the recordings and/or slides here

  • ITC Rules of Origin Facilitator is the first comprehensive global online resource on tariffs, trade agreements and rules of origin designed with SMEs in mind. Click here to access this free tool.

Recommendations to understand what RoO apply to your goods
  1. Ultimately, rules of origin will depend on whether there is a Trade Agreement or not and your specific commodity code.  So if you want to understand what applies to your goods, we recommend:​
2. Ensure you understand the 'cumulation principle' that applies to the specific Trade Agreement you are intending to use preferential access with.  From bilateral to diagonal to full cumulation, this will also help to determine if you can or not claim preferential duties.
3.  Confused on how to determine the origin of your goods?  Seek advice or training courses which can help you gain a better understanding.   The Chamber can help with these.   For training courses, check what we have coming up here and for bespoke advice, click here
4. Proof of Origin - Make sure you understand what document you need to provide to prove origin and evidence you need to hold should you be subject to an audit.
5. Check our Hub's FAQ Section and our News section as we have answered a few questions related to Rules of Origin and provide some updates which you could find useful.
6. Need to speak to someone urgently, email us at benefits@gmchamber.co.uk or call 0161 393 4321