Changes to Special Procedures such as IPR and OPR

As part of the European Union the UK is subject to the European Customs Code. Consequently, Notice 221 (regarding special procedures such as IPR) have now been withdrawn, and as of 1st May 2016 new procedures are in place under Notice 3001.

Whether or not the UK now keeps these changes in view of the UK’s decision to leave the EU will be one of the many matters under discussion, but until the UK does actually leave the European Customs Code will remain in force.

Anyone wishing to use any of the special procedures must now obtain prior authorisation from HMRC. It can take up to 30 days for applications to be processed, so it is important for anyone wishing to use any special procedure, such as IPR (now known as IP) or OPR (now known as OP) to factor this time delay into their importing schedules.

There are certain conditions which must be proven for authorisation to be granted. Any applicant must be:

Financially solvent
Have a good history of compliance
Be able to maintain adequate records
Be registered with an EORI number
Be a registered organisation in the EU

It is also now a condition for a guarantee to be provided to cover potential costs if the applicant fails to abide by the rules of Notice 3001.

Maria Narancic from Point to Point Export Services is an independent international trade adviser who assists organisations world wide with their international trade projects, documentation, Documentary Credits and import/export training. She is based in the United Kingdom. If you require any further assistance with the matters mentioned above, please do contact us by e-mail on or to access other articles on International Trade matters please do check out our website at


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