Last reviewed 12 January 2021

The Government has issued guidance for exporters whose F Gas exports are rejected at EU border control posts (BCP).

British exporters whose hydrofluorocarbons gases (HFC) are rejected at a BCP will need to regain free circulation status for the goods before they can return to Great Britain (GB). The rules apply to both HFCs in bulk and those used in products and equipment such as refrigerants, air conditioning, medical inhalers, insulation foams etc.

To regain free circulation status in GB, the HFCs must comply with clearance processes. Business must:

  • have a full customs declaration

  • be registered on the GB HFC registry

  • have sufficient HFC quota authorisations or delegations at the time of re-entry.

EU regulations for F Gas and Ozone Depleting Substances (ODS) cease to apply in GB from 1 January, although Northern Ireland will still comply with EU regulations.

Most EU requirements have, however, transferred across to UK legislation, including restrictions on ODS and the phasing out of HFCs, but businesses will still be required to comply with EU regulations when placing products containing F Gas and ODS on EU and Northern Ireland markets. Equally, businesses placing HFC goods on the GB market will also be required to apply for a GB quota.

The National Clearance Hub (NCH) which handles the movement of third country goods and processes goods transiting the UK, will instruct Border Force to stop and detain consignments at the border that have been returned from an EU BCP.

NCH or Border Force and environment agency regulators will check consignment and decide how to deal with the returned HFCs. Re-entry of HFCs may not be allowed, and could be destroyed, if exporters are not on the HFC registry or do not have sufficient quota or authorisations.

Further details of how rejected F Gas exports are regulated are available here.

Revised Fluorinated Gas (F Gas) guidance for users, producers and traders is also available here Fluorinated Gas (F Gas): Guidance for Users, Producers and Traders.