Had two Aliexpress orders cancelled

Discussion in 'International Business' started by paulears, Jan 17, 2021.

  1. paulears

    paulears UKBF Big Shot Full Member

    4,755 1,283
    A few of the things I sell I get from a small number of traders on Aliexpress - the price is fine and the deliver simple and I can repeat orders in smaller quantities simply. The products cost me around £150 each, and I'll buy 4 at a time. I've sold a few this week so topped up the stock - everything normal. I get a message asking me to cancel the order as they cannot supply, which I did and I'll get the refund shortly I think. However, I've discovered they are still selling them (admittedly for a few pounds more) and have alternative models too - so I asked why they'd cancelled, as they clearly have lots of stock available. It seems the stock is actually in Poland, and the Polish agent has decided it's too much grief sending things to the UK. Anywhere else in Europe is fine, but not here! I can buy from them Chinese stock, but the shipping charges are now over $35 because they're heavy and bulky. Sending a container to Poland and shipping from there is cheapest for them for Europe, so they cannot sell to me any longer with free shipping. This Brexit thing is becoming annoying now, even though I actually voted for it, thinking for me, it would have advantages. The hidden disadvantages are now making me really regret it!
    Posted: Jan 17, 2021 By: paulears Member since: Jan 7, 2015
  2. 2JP

    2JP UKBF Contributor Free Member

    96 8
    Out of interest, what were the advantages you envisaged? Surely nothing positive for your business? Personally, I like the idea of Brexit but I voted remain simply because I envisaged it would cost the country so much to change. We sell goods to academics with defined budgets in academic institutions and the like. We predict our sales will be down 20% to most of the EU because of Brexit, simply due to the removal of the intra-community transfer ability where, usually, no VAT was payable up front by the recipient for goods to the EU from UK between VAT registered businesses. As the year progresses, we shall find out how many EU customers have the ability to 'postpone' their VAT. It's all the little things that add up to a big trade disadvantage. (Mind you, we are getting hit hard by COVID, too, but certainly not as hard as some; the only place our sales are going up is to Asia, in particular China - ironic, huh?)

    But I am surprised that anybody in trade did not see this coming, especially when GB gov decide (arrogant madness!), at the same time as Brexit to make VAT registration, and collection at point of sale and GB VAT reporting for foreign retailers of B2C under £135 (ex-shipping) compulsory - I mean, what a faff for those retailers! I still cannot believe what an utterly arrogant move this was. Who in a foreign country is going to have a system that can quickly implement charging and recording GB VAT if a sale is to GB and is under £135 but zero rate for above £135? Let alone the added hassle of then regular reporting and paying it. On the lead up to Brexit I kept reading this and kept thinking surely they are not going to be mad enough to try to force people in foreign countries to become GB tax collectors. But they have. It is, I guess, feasible for the likes of ebay to implement and automate, and this was its main target, but what about all the smaller foreign businesses who do not sell through online market place software? It will be interesting to see if the EU brings this in; having read their proposed version, it would appear that it might be voluntary rather than compulsory.

    P.S. Does anybody know yet what happens when a foreign retailer sends goods under £135 and has not registered for GB VAT or collected VAT up front?
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2021
    Posted: Jan 17, 2021 By: 2JP Member since: Dec 10, 2017
  3. paulears

    paulears UKBF Big Shot Full Member

    4,755 1,283
    I believed that the EU brought very little and where I live, we used to have a fishing industry. A few things I do seemed out of UK control, and I did believe that we would be better off - however, I send quite a lot of kit to Northern Ireland - as in sales, and often I take stuff, use it and come home in a month-3 months. Now it seems I'll even need carnets - so I got it very wrong, and I believed the promise of no border in the Irish Sea. Most of my sales are in mainland Britain, and supplies come in from China.
    Posted: Jan 18, 2021 By: paulears Member since: Jan 7, 2015
  4. DefinitelyMaybeUK

    DefinitelyMaybeUK UKBF Contributor Free Member

    53 8
    Interestingly we had a $30 part from the US dated and posted w/c 4th and arrived end of last week - should of had VAT due with the usual £12 (?) RM handling fee, but sailed straight through. Early days though...
    Posted: Jan 18, 2021 By: DefinitelyMaybeUK Member since: Jan 12, 2021
  5. 2JP

    2JP UKBF Contributor Free Member

    96 8
    I think the flood gates are open. Maybe we are doing the direct opposite of what China does - make export really difficult but turning a blind eye to imports.
    Posted: Jan 18, 2021 By: 2JP Member since: Dec 10, 2017