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Logistics and Customs


We work with relevant authorities to facilitate trade and the efficient movement of wine and spirits by businesses.   This includes liaising with HM Revenue and Customs and other bodies on a wide range of technical issues relating to the calculation and payment of alcohol duties, and the import and export of goods. The WSTA also tackles alcohol fraud, from which losses across beer, wine and spirits are estimated to be as high as £1 billion a year.


Excise Movement and Control System

The WSTA has worked with HMRC on the implementation of the Excise Movement and Control System (EMCS).  EMCS is a computer system which captures and processes information in respect of all movements of excise goods in duty suspension within the European Union.  From 1 January 2011, EMCS replaced the old paper system for all UK traders dispatching or receiving duty suspended excise goods to and from EU Member States.    We continue to work in consultation with our members on the WSTA Logistics Group to communicate and resolve with HMRC the inevitable implementation issues that arise in this system. The current emphasis is on resolving anomalies and mnaking the EMCS more flexible and more resilient.

Liaison with Transport for London

Following the success of the Olympic Games in 2012 we have continued to liasie with TfL over road closures and other developments that have the potential to disrupt deliveries to and by businesses operating in London, to ensure freight transport can continue to deliver to central London during whilst works are going on.

Alcohol Fraud

Alcohol fraud damages the livelihood of honest businesses.  We continue to work with HMRC to help it understand how alcohol becomes available to criminals and agree practical steps the industry and government can take to prevent fraud in the supply chains. Organised criminals have progressively moved to exploit weaknesses in the systems that allow the free movement of goods in the EU and our work on the EMCS and the Alcohol Wholesaler Registration Scheme is important in tackling this.   

Want to know more? Ask David Richardson
David Richardson

David Richardson - Regulatory & Commercial Affairs Director

David joined the WSTA in March 2014, after a career prosecuting a wide range of cases for HM Customs and Excise, advising on law enforcement policy and working in other regulatory areas. He leads the WSTA’s work on responding to fraud, liaising with law enforcement agencies and brand protection teams.  He sits on the Joint Alcohol and Tobacco Consultative Group and the Joint Customs Consultative Committee. He advises on compliance, particularly the implementation of the Alcohol Wholesaler Registration Scheme and HMRC's change programme. David supports the Logistics Group.

Email: [email protected]
Telephone: 020 7089 3852

Twitter @wstauk

British consumers already pay a staggering amount of wine & spirit duty. WSTA calls on @PhilipHammondUK for a freeze https://t.co/YOjvX1JXNW


RT @spiritsbusiness: Drinks warns that ‘punitive’ tax hike could cost wine and spirits producers £220 million https://t.co/Ia6FtgUrwQ @wsta…


RT @HarpersWine: WSTA warns of further hefty price hikes if duty is not frozen https://t.co/yROGJbkzOa @wstauk @WSTA_Miles https://t.co/HXO

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