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Qualifying Northern Ireland goods

Movements from Northern Ireland to GB

Qualifying Northern Ireland goods (QNIGs) can continue to move from NI to GB in the same way as they did before 1 January 2021.

QNIGs are goods:

  • in free circulation in NI - on the basis that they are not under customs supervision (except when that supervision arises from from the goods being taken out of NI or the EU); or
  • which have undergone processing operations in NI under the inward processing procedure, and only incorporate inputs which were in free circulation in the UK.

This means that if you are an operator based in Great Britain (GB) and receive a consignment of plants or plant products from NI which are QNIGs and subject to plant passport requirements, they will continue to arrive at your premises with an EU plant passport (PP) as they do now.

As these are QNIGs you do not need to routinely replace this EU PP with a UK PP, and the goods may be moved on under their EU PP unless:

  • you split the consignment and the new ‘units’ (these may be trolleys, pallets, boxes, bags or similar) no longer have a PP attached to them or
  • you choose to replace the plant passport (for example, to include your supplier’s details for business purposes)

If any of the above points apply, a UK plant passport could be issued without a full examination of the plants taking place before onward movement. This is in line with current guidance on when to replace a plant passport. You must keep records of any changes made.

If you replace a plant passport on a QNIG you must put the code ‘GB(NI)’ in Part E of that replacement UK plant passport, to help maintain their identity as QNIGs.

This is to aid monitoring of compliance with plant passporting requirements, including the specific provisions for QNIGs.

This will help ensure that it is easily visible whether a good has originated outside of GB’s phytosanitary zone, yet may not have undergone full third country checks, which will be important for tracing purposes in the event of a pest or disease is found.

If the phytosanitary status of your consignment changes, for example because traceability has not been maintained, there is a pest or disease issue with the consignment or the plants have been ‘grown on’, then a full examination will need to be carried out on the plants.

Once confirmed they are fully aligned with GB plant health standards, a standard UK plant passport with Part E left blank could be issued.

Read guidance on when plants have been ‘grown-on’.