Import to EU of goods from third countries.
Do you import to EU goods from third countries while not sure if you are compliant with EU standards ? What do you need to know before getting your products through the EU border for the first time ? If you are seeking information we’re about to tell you what to focus on.
What is an import?
Import means entering goods from third countries (for example from China) to EU Member States where goods are released for free circulation (or cease to be dependent upon the special procedures).
Special procedures are meant for goods physically present in EU area, yet not being actually put on the market. Special procedures are:
- inward processing,
- temporary admission,
- customs warehousing.
If your goods go through any of procedures then, automatically, they are exempted from any costs like duty and taxes (excise tax and VAT). Remember that if you want to get the permission from customs authorities, you must report your goods for special procedures in advance.
Import to EU. Procedures
Import is process of subjecting goods to customs clearance. This could be initiated in writing, electronic form, oral form or got through designation as ‘nothing to declare’ if goods pass through borders at airports or ports.
Duty, excise and VAT
If you want to import to EU any goods, it is important to pay attention if it’s obligatory to pay duty for the type of goods you deal with (some of goods are exempted from that) and if you are obliged to pay excise tax and VAT (by using a declaration VAT – 7 or VAT – K as tax due).
If you are obliged to pay duty (your goods are not subjected to special procedures) you can use electronic customs tariff called ISZTAR or TARIC where you can figure out : layouts and classification of goods, restrictions, import bans and customs rates.
Employees and products compliance
While handling products you also need to pay attention to whereabouts of your producer. In particular you should ask about things like working conditions of producer’s employees (salary, health, and safety, abolition of child labour) as well as material and components that goods are made of (if they are safe for environment and don’t pose health hazards) so that they would be compliant with EU regulations and standards.
Import to EU. Importer’s check list
To sum up, before your first import you should:
- check if the producer of goods have supporting documents which are compliant with EU regulations (report of conformity testing with harmonised standards),
- make sure that documents which were mentioned above are authentic – you may contact control body which made the testing,
- find out if you have declaration of conformity CE issued and signed by producer based on tests mentioned above,
- register product in REACH system, if necessary, and any applicable waste collection system,
- remember about duty and taxes,
- get informed on the working conditions of producer’s employees.