Completing your Intrastat Supplementary Declaration
Commodity codes, values, delivery terms, Nature of Transaction Codes, net mass and supplementary units for completing Intrastat Supplementary Declarations.
If you trade goods within the EU and their value exceeds the thresholds set for that year you must complete and submit Supplementary Declarations (SDs) for Intrastat. Any VAT registered business that has Arrivals (goods acquired from suppliers in other EU member states) or Dispatches (goods supplied to customers in other EU member states) with a value above the threshold has to complete and submit SDs.
The threshold for a calendar year is £1.5 million for Arrivals and £250,000 for Dispatches.
Intrastat and SDs do not apply to the supply of services.
Please provide contact details in case HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) need to query the information on your declaration. If you fail to submit your Intrastat SDs by their due date or send incomplete or inaccurate data you may be committing a criminal offence. The penalties involved are seen as a last resort but may be imposed where SDs are persistently late, missing, inaccurate or incomplete.
Intrastat SD period
Intrastat statistics are collected on a monthly basis and it’s important you report the data in the correct period.
If your level of trade in goods with other EU member states reaches one or both of the Intrastat thresholds you must submit your SDs from the first day of the month in which the threshold is exceeded. You must continue to submit SDs until the annual value of your trade falls below the next year’s threshold, which is subject to change from time to time.
The period is the month and year (mmyy) to which the declaration refers eg, 1212 for December 2012.
The due date for submission is now the 21st day of the month following the period for which you are reporting transactions. For example, Intrastat data relating to April 2012 would have been due by 21 May 2012.
Where your business has been approved to use special VAT periods, your business is also allowed to use these periods when submitting your Intrastat SDs. For example if your business has 13 x 4 week VAT periods you must ensure that one of your Intrastat periods include one 8 week period (12 submission periods in total).
If you have no data to declare in a particular month you should send in a ‘nil’ return to avoid having reminder notices sent to you. Completing a nil return on the online forms means you only need to complete the period field.
Note that all VAT registered businesses, regardless of their intra-EU turnover, must show the total value of goods dispatched to other EU member states in box 8 and the total arrivals of goods acquired from other EU member states in box 9 of their normal VAT return. For more information see VAT guidance.
Intrastat SD commodity code
The commodity code, which you need to identify for all interaction with customs, is the most important data field on the Intrastat SD. This 8-digit number identifies the type of goods which are the subject of a Dispatch or Arrival and is the basis for most of the statistical information used by government departments, the European Commission, United Nations agencies and businesses.
It is vital to complete this data field correctly. For example, by transposing 2 digits of the commodity code for unworked precious stones (7103 10 00) you could end up declaring some very expensive cane molasses (1703 10 00). If your particular business trades in precious stones under the chapter 71 commodity code and part of the trade has been entered in the cane molasses heading, neither you, nor those in the cane molasses business, are going to get a true picture of the UK’s trade.
Commodity codes for all goods are described in the Combined Nomenclature on which the Integrated Tariff of the UK is based. A simplified Intrastat Classification Nomenclature (ICN) is produced for EU trade, omitting duty and tariff details. You can search for correct commodity codes..
If you need advice on a particular code, you can request additional support by sending a request by email.
To enable HMRC to deal with your enquiry, ensure:
- only one item only is shown per email
the request includes the following information:
- what the product is
- what it is made of - if made or more than one material, explain the breakdown
- what it is used for
- how the product works/functions
- how it is presented/packaged
Some additional information is required on certain products:
- footwear: include the type (shoe, boot, slipper etc), upper material detail, outer sole material detail, heel height and the purpose for men or women
- food: include precise composition details by percentage weight of all the ingredients to 100% and the method of manufacture or process undergone (fresh, frozen, dried, further prepared/preserved etc)
- chemicals: include the CAS Number, whether the product is a liquid/powder/solid and include the percentage ingredients
- textiles: include the material composition, how it is constructed (knitted/woven) and the name of fabric
- vehicles: include the age, engine type (petrol or diesel), engine size, whether the vehicle is new or used, whether the vehicle is over 30 years old, whether it is in its original condition, is the vehicle going to be for everyday use
A classification officer will reply by email, giving you non-legally binding classification advice based on the information you have supplied.
Intrastat SD value
Show the value - as you must do for VAT purposes - in GBPs sterling rounded up to the nearest pound. Do not show the ‘£’ sign or pence.
If you need to convert an amount from a foreign currency into sterling you must do so using one of the following published rates:
- the UK market selling rate at the time of the acquisition - the rates published in national newspapers are acceptable as evidence of the rates at the relevant time
- the period rate of exchange published by HMRC for customs purposes - you can obtain rates for a particular period from the HMRC VAT helpline
- a rate that you use for commercial purposes that is objectively verifiable, changes frequently and is not based on a forward rate and for which you have received written approval from HMRC to use for VAT purposes
Forward rates or methods deriving from forward rates are not acceptable.
If you have no trade for a given month you should submit a nil return.
When calculating the value of goods for SDs you must include any related freight or insurance charges where they form part of the invoice or contract price of the goods. You must also include any goods supplied free of charge. However, you must not include the value of any excise duty that may be payable. You must also exclude any freight and insurance costs not included in the contract price.
You should include:
- any related freight or insurance charges where they form part of the invoice or contract price of the goods
- goods supplied free of charge
You should not include:
- any extra charges - eg, freight and insurance costs - not included on the goods invoice
- excise duty on alcohol, tobacco and hydrocarbon oils
For examples on the make-up of values associated with various types of contract or delivery terms refer to Notice 60.
Alternatively, you can find a searchable version of Notice 60 - Intrastat general guide.
Returning wrong or incomplete information for the value data field, or failing to return any information can produce incorrect data that might affect decisions on interest rates. This impacts on most people and will particularly affect the cost of business borrowing.
Intrastat SD and delivery terms
Delivery terms, known as Incoterms (International Commercial Contracts), indicate what part of the costs and risks the buyer or seller of goods has agreed to take on as part of the contract of purchase or sale.
You only have to provide delivery terms information in your Intrastat SD if your annual threshold exceeds £24 million. Unlike the exemption threshold, if you reach this second threshold during the calendar year, you do not have to start submitting delivery terms data until 1 January of the next calendar year and only then if your arrivals and/or dispatches remain above the new threshold set for the following year.
The codes used are listed below and can also be found in Notice 60.
|Code||Description||Rules for use with x modes of transport|
|CFR||Cost and Freight (C&F)||Sea, inland water and air transport|
|CIF||Cost, insurance and freight||Sea and inland water only|
|CIP||Carriage and insurance paid to||Any or all modes of transport|
|CPT||Carriage paid to||Any or all modes of transport|
|DAP||Delivered at place||Any or all modes of transport|
|DAT||Delivered at terminal||Any or all modes of transport|
|DDP||Delivered duty paid||Any or all modes of transport|
|EXW||Ex works||Any or all modes of transport|
|FAS||Free alongside ship||Sea, inland water and air transport|
|FCA||Free carrier||Any or all modes of transport|
|FOB||Free on board||Sea, inland water and air transport|
|XXX||Other terms not listed above|
Intrastat SD Nature of Transaction Code
Information on the type of transaction ie, the Nature of Transaction Code (NoTC) is collected because while most trade is in either simple sales or purchases (NoTC 1), some transactions are recorded differently for statistical purposes.
The NoTC is used to show the type of transaction being declared. The codes commonly used are code:
- 10 for a straightforward sale or purchase
- 30 for free-of-charge goods
- 40 for goods sent for processing
- 50 for goods returned following processing
The NoTC will normally only comprise one digit and a zero (for example NoTC 10, 40 and 50).
However, a second optional digit can be used to help you reconcile your Intrastat and VAT accounts, explaining anomalies which otherwise might result in enquiries from HMRC (for example NoTC 16, 17 and 18). Use of this second additional digit information is not mandatory.
The NoTCs recognised by HMRC systems are:
10, 16, 17, 18, 20, 30, 37, 38, 40, 50, 70, 77, 78, 80, 87, 88, 90, 97 and 98.
For example, the 2-digit combination of ‘26’ or ‘60’ will not be accepted.
NoTC first digit
This section provides details of which NoTC first digit must be used to identify specific types of transactions.
NoTC first digits 2, 4 and 5 identify a transaction which should not be shown in box 8 or 9 of the VAT return.
|Transaction||NoTC first digit to be used|
|All transactions involving actual or intended change of ownership for a consideration except those appropriate to NoTC 2, 7, or 8 (first digit). This includes stock moved within the same legal entity (between member states), and financial leasing. Most commonly used with the second digit zero but can also be used with second digit 6, 7, and 8.||1|
|Returned goods and replacement goods. Used with second digit zero.||2|
|Free of charge (FOC) transactions involving permanent change of ownership. (A positive value must be shown on the SD for FOC goods. Most commonly used with the second digit zero but can also be used with second digit 7 and 8.||3|
|Goods sent or received for processing. Used with second digit zero. Note you must only use NoTC 40 when goods sent for processing will return to the UK, or be returned to the original dispatching MS.||4|
|Goods returned or received following processing. Used with a second digit zero. Note you must only use NoTC 50 when goods are being returned or received after being sent for processing using NoTC 40.||5|
|Joint defence projects or other joint inter-governmental production programmes (for example, Airbus). Note you must be registered as part of the project to use this code. Most commonly used with the second digit zero but can also be used with second digit 7 and 8.||7|
|Transactions involving the supply of building materials and technical equipment under a general construction or civil engineering contract for which no separate invoicing of the goods is required and an invoice for the total contract is issued (the value of the goods actually moving goes in the value data field of the SD, not the total value of the contract). Most commonly used with the second digit zero but can also be used with second digit 7and 8.||8|
|Other transactions which do not fit any of the descriptions above. Most commonly used with the second digit zero but can also be used with second digit 7 and 8. (For example, first digit 9 should be used with second digit 7 when goods are sent on an operational lease that is intended to cover a period longer than 2 years).||9|
NoTC second digit
In most cases the second digit will be a zero. But there are circumstances when the use of further optional second digit information can be used to explain differences between VAT and Intrastat reporting.
|Transaction||NoTC optional second digit to be used|
|Credit note values, where the goods are not returned, for example, an amount used to reduce the overall value of the SD where it is used in combination with the first digit 1=16. The second digit ‘6’ acts as a negative value for VAT/Intrastat comparison purposes.||6|
|Transactions which must be declared on SDs, but are not shown in boxes 8 or 9 of the VAT return, for example, goods arriving in an excise or fiscal warehouse (where the date of arrival, rather than the tax point is being used) where it is used in combination with NoTC 1=17.||7|
|Transactions which are declared in boxes 8 or 9 of the VAT Return, but are only required on the SD for reconciliation purposes, for example, goods leaving an excise or fiscal warehouse (to home use in the UK) where the tax point was not used to declare the arrival, stage payments made when no movement of goods occurs, or final stage payment. In these examples the second digit 8 will be used with the first digit 1=18.||8|
Intrastat SD net mass and supplementary units
Whether net mass or supplementary unit is required depends on the commodity code used. You only need to complete one of these two data fields.
Net mass (weight including immediate packaging) is collected for most goods because it refers to the physical characteristics of goods and is free from valuation problems. Very often the weight of goods is a more reliable indicator of goods movement than the value.
Net mass, if required, is rounded up to the nearest kilogram. Only show the figure, not the ‘kg’ letters.
You are required to declare the supplementary unit for certain commodity codes. The ICN online will indicate if this is required. Where a supplementary unit is requested you will have to input the required information.
If a supplementary unit is required you do not have to supply a net mass figure.
Intrastat SD country codes
You should add the country code of EU member states from which the goods were received or to which they are destined in this data field. Find information on country codes in Notice 60 of the Intrastat general guide.
Goods sent to or received from (country)
The country from which the goods are received should be on the Arrival form.
The country to which the goods are sent should be on the Dispatch form.
The table below contains all country codes for the Intrastat SD.
|Code||Country (in alphabetical order)|
Trade statistics between partner countries are used for a number of purposes, including analysis of economic trends, trade shares, market analysis and business decisions.
Published: 10 August 2012
Updated: 1 September 2015
- Guidance on help and advice for commodity codes has been updated.
- Contact details for Intrastat system added.
- The annual threshold has been updated to £1.5 million.
- First published.