A new 'SME Brexit Support Fund' is a grant of up to £2,000 towards training or professional advice. Unlike the new Irish Brexit voucher, the GB grant is only available to the largest of small business.

The new British SME Brexit Support Fund is only available if your business has up to 500 employees and no more than £100 million annual turnover and is based in the UK.

A similar Brexit voucher scheme being run in Ireland, which is only available to business in Northern Ireland and the  Republic Of Ireland (ROI), sets a lower criteria of 250 employees and no more than £50million in turnover.

The aim of both schemes is that you can use the grant for training on the new customs rules, processes and on specific import and export related aspects. These include VAT, excise and rules of origin and for professional advice so your business can meet its customs, excise, import VAT or safety and security declaration requirements.

The GB SME Brexit Support Fund

Eligibility: your business must:

  • Be established in the UK.
  • Have been established in the UK for at least 12 months before submitting the application, or currently hold Authorised Economic Operator status.
  • Not have previously failed to meet its tax or customs obligations.
  • Have no more than 500 employees.
  • Have no more than £100 million turnover.
  • Import or export goods between Great Britain and the EU, or moves goods between Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Your business must also either:

  • Complete (or intend to complete) import or export declarations internally for its own goods.
  • Use someone else to complete import or export declarations but requires additional capability internally to effectively import or export (such as advice on rules of origin or advice on dealing with a supply chain).

The application process is not yet live.

  • PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) will be administering the grants for HMRC.
  • You will apply online but the applications are not open yet. The application page will be updated when you can submit an application.

The Irish Brexit Voucher Scheme

The Irish voucher scheme is administered by Intertrade in Ireland.

"Voucher support is available to help you understand the implications of the new trading relationship and its impact on your cross-border business."

The Irish 'Brexit Voucher' provides 100% financial support up to £2,000/€2,250 (inclusive of VAT) towards professional advice to help businesses to identify Brexit exposure and to plan. The voucher can be used by the cross-border trader to complete a supply chain analysis of the business, map trade flows, review suppliers and explore the impact of the future trading environment. It can also be used to support other areas, for example customs training.

To qualify for financial support your business must:

  • Be located on the island of Ireland (North or South).
  • Trade across the border (NI/ROI).
  • Employ less than 250 employees.
  • Have an annual turnover of less than €50m (sterling equivalent).
  • Have a satisfactory trading history (we reserve the rights to request submission of financial accounts).

This is already live and is run by Intertrade.


It appears that NI business can claim both grants. State aid limits need to be considered when applying for grant funding.

Neither of the schemes will be of any use to the small and family business who are now re-modeling their businesses post-Brexit. They do not employ sufficient numbers of employees to be eligible for the scheme. 

For on-going support on VAT, customs duties and the rest of Brexit, contact the Virtual Tax Partner© support service at www.VtaxP.co.uk 

Useful guides on this topic

Brexit: working abroad/working in the UK
Brexit: what are the rules for working abroad, what are the Brexit changes to tax and national insurance?

Brexit: exporting goods from GB
What do the new rules mean? How do you now avoid double tariffs? What applications need to be made in order to continue trading smoothly? Do you need to set up shop in the EU?

External links

GB SME Brexit

Irish Brexit Voucher

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