UK/USA/EU Export Controls Customs Advisor






"Downsizing" and "delayering" in the 1980's and 1990's coincided with dramatic reductions in tariffs such that few companies now can justify the cost of in-house expertise in Customs and Trade Law beyond that necessary for clearing imports and exports through Customs.




Forwarders are increasingly taking on responsibilities which require a detailed knowledge of Export Control ( see Export Control FAQs)as well as the finer points of Customs law. But goods cannot be correctly classified without a very detailed knowledge of the Strategic Export Control List and UK/US/ EU and UN sanctions.


Few Exporters are aware that they must by Customs law keep their forwarders up to date with the Export Control Classification of their goods as well as normal customs data such as Origin. This exposes the goods to seizure and both forwarder and exporter to penalties from the UK Border Force.


Tara's principal Consultants Alex McLoughlin and Nigel Gibbon have successfully negotiated many such Non Compliance cases direct with UKBA and HMRC at local level as well as training export staff. They have also mitigated penalties more formally where Voluntary Disclosures were involved and/or assisted lawyers representing non resident owners as well as UK Exporters and forwarders.


Our lead consultant Alex McLoughlin has extensive experience as Head of Trade and Regulatory Affairs reporting to the Main Board Legal Director of ICL ( later Fujitsu-ICL) in London and Vice President Trade Relations of ICL USA in Washington DC.


Alex has dealt extensively with the UK and US Governments. He interpreted UK, European, US Export Control, International Trade and Customs legislation for the whole Group worldwide as well as  key Customers and Suppliers .


Since 1995 Tara Trade has successfully dealt with almost all types of Export Control and Customs issues on both sides of the Atlantic and throughout Europe, at all levels from local issues up to and including the European Court.


They have advised a large number of SMEs, Multinational and High Technology companies of a dozen different nationalities.  Alex himself has also served for some 14 years as a member of the VAT & Duties Tribunal ( a part time Judicial appointment)  hearing appeals against HMRC in Customs cases. He also brought to bear the marketing and management consultancy training he received from The Boston Consulting Group among others and his experience as an Economist, Systems Manager  and Tax specialist where necessary.


Nigel Gibbon

Is a solicitor specialising in Customs and VAT.


Having previously worked in the Customs and Excise Solicitor's Office, he is one of the UK's most experienced advocate in VAT and Duties appeals, having represented HM Customs more than 1000 times between 1988 and 1996.


He qualified as a Solicitor in 1983, and spent 3 years in general litigation practice in Cardiff before joining HM Customs in London in 1986. In 1990, he set up the Solicitor's Office VAT and Excise Division in Manchester, of which he was head until 1996, when he joined Hammond Suddards.

He has handled every area of VAT and Excise liability, including land and property, partial exemption, retail schemes, TOMS, pyramid selling and finance as well as mainstream assessment cases.


Nigel and Alex have worked in association for many years on multi-million pound cases involving 7 countries.





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