Trade Test XML Documentation for CDS

This is an update from the HMRC Software Developer Support Team on the current status on the Trade Test XML Sample Messages and other available Technical Documentation for CDS.

 XML Sample Messages

The XML samples that were issued on 31st July and that are now available in the Google Drive Folder CDS 03 Customs Declaration can be used as an exemplar for structuring valid tests in TTM4.2. We are aware some discrepancies remain and these will need to be further updated. However, we recognise that what we have previously issued has been lacking the quality you would expect to receive. Therefore, we are undertaking a full review of all the samples and associated scenarios before issuing a further update. Please be assured that the programme is addressing this as a matter of priority, and we will let you know as soon as this is complete.

The TTM5 XML Samples will then be issued ahead of TTM5. More information on TTM5 will be published as soon as it is available.

 Tariff Download Service

 The Tariff Download Service which was scheduled for delivery in July but there are some remaining technical aspects of the Tariff Downloads to be released as soon as possible. In the interim an updated Tariff Data File extract will be issued in the coming weeks.

 Upcoming Documentation

The following documentation is scheduled to be released in early September: 

  • Inventory Linking Exports Service Design
  • CDS Declaration Submission Service Design Exports
  • Finalised Export and the Inventory Linking UK Trade Tariff
  • Finalised Appendix 16 Freight Location Codes of the UK Trade Tariff, Volume 3

 At the moment we can also confirm that for Release 2 in addition to File Upload, Amendments and Declaration Status Query API will come into scope. Further information on the APIs that will be delivered for TTM6 will be shared in September.

 We also appreciate that Google Drive was never intended as a long term solution to host technical documentation. Our Digital API Team will be conducting user research workshops in the coming weeks with a cross section of developers, to ensure that we can provide the improved accessibility and usability of documentation as we migrate all of the documentation to the Developer Hub.

 Queries and Feedback

 Some developers have experienced issues with the support model process for Trade testing. We are working urgently to improve the support you receive for Trade testing enquiries, also ensuring we have a robust support process in place for transition to and support of the Live service.

As a reminder it is important that in order for us to triage your questions to the relevant team quickly when you are raising a question on a particular document, please only use Deskpro or SDST mailbox and always refer to the full name and version of the document you are querying. This will help us make sure your query is logged and tracked for a resolution as swiftly as possible.

 When we publish documentation updates we always welcome your feedback and aim to respond to your queries as soon as possible.

 Please note if you do not receive a direct response through SDST to your feedback,  the relevant teams and document owners will ensure your feedback is addressed in the next iteration of the documentation. Our document owners and relevant teams always aim to incorporate as much of your feedback as possible and provide further clarification, the updated documents may not always contain every document change requested. Where this is the case we will look to provide you with a response explain why your comments have not been incorporated.  You can contact the SDS Team at

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