The Customs Grant Scheme is a national scheme available to help businesses prepare for new customs arrangements from 1st January 2021.
The Customs Grant Scheme is available to all organisations that meet the eligibility criteria, and will cover up to 100% of eligible IT costs up to €200,000. The IT grant provides funding towards purchasing the first year licence of a packaged software solution to increase the automation and productivity of businesses that currently complete, or intend to complete, customs declarations on behalf of their clients, or internally for their own goods.
Funding can be used for:
• Buying hardware required for the software to operate
• Installation and configuration of software and hardware
• Software-related training
All expenditure must be reasonable, appropriate and at normal commercial rates.
Certain IT expenditure is excluded from the grant; this includes expenditure not directly related to increasing capacity or productivity within the customs brokerage function relative to preparations for future customs arrangements. Bespoke software packages are also excluded. Only commercial off-the-shelf software is eligible, which is defined as packaged solutions that either run unmodified, or can be adapted to fit the needs of the organisation, rather than custom-made, bespoke solutions.
Network costs are also excluded, as are costs relating purely to IT expenditure to facilitate the transition from interfacing with the CHIEF system (Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight) to the new CDS (Customs Declaration Service) system.
To apply for the Customs Grant Scheme, businesses must supply details of the software package, and hardware if applicable, that they are intending to purchase, including software costs and any related hardware and training costs to run the software. If applicable, an estimate of the expected annual declaration capacity increase the grant is likely to provide your organisation, as well as an estimated number of additional clients you will be able to take on.
From application, grants take approximately three weeks to review and approve. From receipt of the grant offer, businesses have two months to claim the grant. For more information on how to apply for this grant, please contact us now.
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