Gun price changes after a no-deal Brexit


What are WTO rules and how will they affect UK shooters?

When it comes to buying guns, Simon West from the Gun Trade Association spells it out: the World Trade Organisation tariff on importing guns is 3.2%. The tariff on imprting gun and ammunition parts is 2.7%.

These are prices that the gun trade will try to absorb in the short term. Browning’s UK operation will not put up prices for at least the first three months of 2021, in the hope that a deal will be done, and the UK will go back to being part of the European free trade area. Browning also plans to do the customs and excise paperwork for its dealers, including VAT duty deferment, and it will hold more stock in the UK. “I’m sure there will be an agreement,” says Browning’s David Stapley.

There are other, heavier tariffs on other kit. Frederic Hanner, who runs Blaser in the UK, says he faces 6% on optics and 12% on clothing. “That really is painful,” he says.



One of the problems for UK distributors serving manufacturers on the Continent is that goods come into the EU and there is duty to pay, and then goods may have to go out of the EU in order to come to the UK, and there will be more duty to pay. In the long-term, depending on deal or no-deal, all UK shooting kit importers are looking at sourcing goods direct.

Then there’s gamemeat. We tried to find out what the WTO tariff on venison is, but the WTO doesn’t cover it. The tariff-finder on the WTO website {thanks to Nick Taylor from Deer Industry New Zealand for pointing us to this link) lists camel, parrot and sea lion meat, but neither deer nor venison. The UK deer and venison bodies don’t know what the tariff is either. The British Deer Farms & Parks Association declined to comment.

With the current low demand for venison because of the covid-19 pandemic, one gamedealer we spoke to, Ardgay Game, is forecasting zero sales during the first six months of 2021.


Gloomy: Ruaridh Waugh from Ardgay Game


No-deal won’t be good for taking your guns in and out of the UK. The European Firearms Permit ceases to work for Britons or for others coming into the UK on 1 January 2021. The best way to apply for a visitor’s permit is to approach the consulate or embassy of the country you will be travelling to, and any through which you may also be travelling. They will either have the application form available for download from their website or will be able to supply you one on request via email.

The exception is Northern Ireland. Under the terms of the Northern Ireland Protocol the Government has confirmed that Residents of Northern Ireland will still be able to request a European Firearms Permit and to use it to take a lawfully owned firearm to an EU country, including the Republic of Ireland, from 1 January.

Taking your dog abroad? UK Pet Passports will no longer be valid for travel. Instead, pets travelling to the EU from the UK will need a 20-page ‘Animal Health Certificate’ issued by a vet. It cannot be issued to you more than 10 days before you travel, it can only be used for a single trip for entry to the EU, you have to come back to the UK no more than four months after the date of issue, you can’t get an AHC for a pet younger than 12 weeks, and they are only start being valid 22 days after your pet has had a rabies jab. Otherwise – no problem.

And of course, that could all change. With a broadly anti countryside Conservative government, none of this will be a priority in a future deal.

For the WTO tariff finder, visit – and if you can find a tariff for deer or venison, please let us know.

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