Importing goods from non-EU countries?

Businesses that are importing goods need to be aware of the many special rules that apply. Whilst most smaller businesses importing goods will use a courier or freight forwarder, it is still important to be aware of the duties and VAT implications.

Businesses importing goods must be able to distinguish between goods imported from outside the EU or within the EU. Intra-EU movements of goods that are imported are referred to as ‘acquisitions’, and goods that are exported to the EU are known as ‘dispatches’.

It is generally more straightforward to handle acquisitions from within the EU and there is no import duty to deal with. It remains to be seen what changes will be made as the Brexit negotiation rumble on.

Businesses that start to import goods from outside the EU will be required to apply for an Economic Operators’ Registration and Identification System (EORI), that helps businesses communicate with customs officials when they are importing and exporting goods. They will also need to ensure they correctly classify any imported goods, declare the goods to customs and pay any VAT and duty that is due.

As we have mentioned this is a complex area and we would be happy help any new importers to ensure that they are managing the various aspects associated with the import of goods correctly.