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Welcome to our guide on customs clearance procedures at ports: Belfast Port, dating back to 1613, holds immense historical significance for the province of Ulster. Spanning approximately 2000 acres, it represents about 20% of Belfast’s city area and handles a staggering 70% of all seaborn trade entering Northern Ireland, making it the region’s largest cargo port. Additionally, as Northern Ireland’s largest passenger port, Belfast Port caters to 1.5 million ferry passengers annually.

Handling 24.5 million tonnes of cargo in 2022, Belfast Port ranks as the fifth busiest commercial port in the UK. Situated on the eastern coast of Northern Ireland, it serves as a crucial link in the supply chain for many businesses in the region, facilitating connections to the UK and mainland Europe. Understanding customs clearance procedures at Belfast Port is essential for businesses engaged in import and export activities, particularly for goods traveling from the UK to Ireland. Leveraging the expertise of customs clearance agents can streamline the process, ensuring efficient movement of goods and compliance with customs declarations and charges.

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Due to it being part of the UK but located on the island of Ireland, Belfast Port has a very complex customs clearance procedure. As well as this, Belfast Port is capable of handling various types of cargo, these include bulk cargo, containerised goods, and general cargo. This diverse cargo portfolio means customs clearance in Belfast Port is very heavily involved in customs clearance.

  1. Documentation: Similar to every other cargo port in the world, documentation is necessary when importing and exporting goods through Belfast Port. The documentation needed for trade through Belfast Port includes commercial invoices and/or packing lists of the goods being imported or exported, import declarations, export declarations, airway bills/bills of lading, and when importing and exporting goods from the EU, an Entry Summary Declaration (ENS) is needed.
  2. Checks: Goods entering and leaving Belfast Port can be subject to checks. These checks include physical checks, identity checks and documentation checks. These inspections are put in place in order to ensure goods match the description in the accompanying documentation and to ensure all goods are traveling with the appropriate declarations.
  3. Registration: Anyone who wishes to trade using Belfast Port must have an Economic Operators Registration and Identification (EORI) number. This number is needed to engage in any customs activity. This unique identification is included in all custos declarations, and it allows customs authorities to monitor trade activities.

There are several more procedures necessary to clear goods through Belfast Port. Most businesses that import and export goods through the port partner with customs agents or brokers. These specialists can use their extensive knowledge to help you seamlessly navigate the troubled waters of customs clearance in Belfast Port. Reducing costs, time loss and most importantly, stress!

How Do I Contact a Customs Agent to arrange Customs Clearance at Belfast Port?

When you are ready to customs clear your goods, you can contact one of our agents using the form below and we will assist you.


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