Since the world has developed into a global economy, lots of companies – both big and small – are importing goods from abroad into the UK. It is a fact that having your goods produced in a foreign country – Asia for example has become the place to have goods manufactured and then shipped to the UK – can result in huge savings and therefore a bigger margin of profit; however why do you need a customs clearance agent and what is there job in getting your goods into the United Kingdom?

Everything that comes from outside the European Union has to go through customs first before it is deemed acceptable to enter the country, much in the same way that you have to go through passport control at the airport. This is where a customs clearance service comes in. For sure, you could look into doing the customs aspect yourself but surely hiring a qualified professional is a much better option? For instance, consider the amount of paperwork that is associated with customs clearance and bringing products into the UK, especially if they are in bulk. On top of everything else you have to do, is a mountain of paperwork really necessary? Indeed, how do you know what forms to fill in and what specific information to give?

In addition, how do you know if your goods are susceptible to any tariff or duty charges especially if they are coming from Asia? Using a customs clearance service can prevent any legal problems further down the line or thwart a hold up of getting your products into the country. If you have ordered in bulk and paid a lot of money to have these commodities manufactured and shipped from abroad then the last thing you need is for them to be held up by UK customs because you have failed to complete the necessary paperwork or paid the right duty on them; a custom clearance agent can sort all of this out before it becomes an issue.

Indeed, customs clearance also assists in the transportation of your goods. Your insurance may not cover your merchandise from damage if they are not packaged correctly during shipment and you could potentially incur a massive loss should anything happen; by using a custom clearance service you can prevent this as they assist in getting the right mode of transportation and making sure the right packaging is available to ensure that your products arrive to the UK and make it through customs safely and securely.

Hiring a customs clearance service, to inexperienced importers, may seem like an unnecessary expense however if something should go wrong then you will soon find out how important their job is. By using a custom clearance agent you will be making sure that your cargo not only reaches the UK in one piece, but also makes it through the tangled web of UK customs.

James Selvey is Managing Director of First Point Freight Limited, a UK based customs clearance agent located in Chertsey, Surrey. The company offers worldwide freight forwarding services by air freight, sea freight and road freight and around 80% of the companies' business is involved in importing from China. For further information you can visit their website