Guidance

Finding commodity codes for imports into or exports out of the UK or EU

Find a commodity code to classify your goods and look up duty rates, reliefs and quotas.

You’ll need a commodity code to make your customs declaration when you bring goods in or send goods out of the UK or EU. This includes goods sent to you from abroad.

If you classify your goods correctly you’ll know what rate of duty and import VAT you should pay, and if:

  • the duty is suspended
  • you need a licence to move your goods
  • your goods are covered by:
    • the Common Agricultural Policy
    • anti-dumping duties
    • tariff quotas

Hard to classify goods

Some goods are hard to classify. If you’re having difficulty, check the guidance about:

Using the Trade Tariff tool

You can search the Trade Tariff tool to find the right commodity code.

Find out how to use the Trade Tariff tool.

Split consignments

Some goods, like large machinery, cannot be transported in a single consignment.

Find out if your goods qualify for import in split consignments and what you need to do to import goods in this way.

Get help with a difficult classification

You should first search the EU Binding Tariff Information (EBTI) rulings on the Europa website to see if a decision has already been made on a similar product.

If you still cannot find the right commodity code for your goods, you can contact HMRC for advice or for a decision on your goods. You can do this in two ways.

Informal advice

You can use HMRC’s Tariff Classification Service to get non-legally binding classification advice. HMRC will respond to your email within 5 working days. Use this method for a quick and informal decision.

Formal legally binding decision

You can apply for a Binding Tariff Information decision. This is a legally binding decision on the commodity code to use for your goods and can take between 30 and 60 days to be processed. Use this method if:

  • your goods are hard to classify and informal advice is inappropriate for you or your business
  • your goods are a new type
  • you need a longer lasting and legally binding decision for your goods
Published 21 December 2018