Non-EU countries

Non-EU countries

Exporting is great, whether within the E.U or outside the E.U (known as third countries).

However goods travelling outside the E.U, require special procedures and paperwork.

The rules and regulations of duties and taxes can be very tricky and constantly changing. But understanding the process and landing costs can save you and your customers surprises.

Customs authorities exist to regulate the flow of goods at any given border. Each country has its own independent customs authority with its own processess and regulations. Dutiable shipments are subject to a customs duty, which is a tariff or tax imposed on goods when transported across international borders.

The calculation of duties depends on the assessable value of a dutiable shipment. For the purpose of this calculation, dutiable goods are given a classification code that is known as the Harmonized System code.

This system has been assigned by the World Customs Organization and continues to evolve.

Whether a shipment is a gift or not, it must still go through an import procedure as determined by custom’s law in the destination country. The shipment is cleared through customs based on the origin country, the value and quantity, but not its purpose or intended use.

What is a customs invoice?

A customs invoice is a document that travels with your parcel, and contains information about the items inside your parcel. The customs invoice is required for customs clearance, and your shipment can’t leave the country without one. If you are sending a parcel to a country outside the E.U, you must fill out a customs invoice which specifically details every item you are exporting.

Details that need to be included on a Customs Invoice:

  • Sender's Full Name and Collection Address

  • Receivers Full Name and Delivery Address

  • Itemised description of goods

  • Total Shipment value

  • Reason of Export

What are duties and taxes?

Duties and taxes are charges that are calculated by Customs using detailed information of the goods in your shipment. The duties and taxes are then applied to the cost of your shipment, typically upon entering a country.

How does Customs determine if a shipment is ‘dutiable’?

A shipment is considered ‘dutiable’ when the goods shipped are part of a sales transaction and are for permanent export. Duties and taxes can vary depending on the commodity’s classification code, value, country of manufacture and associated freight charges. For example, cars and alterations made in another country to clothes already owned are both dutiable. Each country establishes its own standards as to which goods are considered non-dutiable or dutiable.

Who pays for the duties and taxes?
The person or business receiving the shipment is legally obliged to pay Duty unless the sender has agreed to accept these charges in the contract of sale.

International trade is a complex process, but also an exciting business opportunity, bear in mind that if these paperwork requirements are not met as per customs standards whilst exporting, it could result in shipments being delayed or even abandoned or disposed.


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