List of goods imported into Great Britain that are controlled

List of controlled goods that follow the normal import declaration rules if HMRC apply continuity plans due to system issues.

If HMRC apply business continuity plans due to system issues, you must follow normal import declaration rules if you import the following controlled goods into Great Britain.

Type of goods Notes
Excise goods All goods subject to excise duty including:

alcohol products
tobacco products
hydrocarbon oils, biofuels, fuel substitutes and road fuel gases
goods subject to Climate Change Levy
tobacco product manufacturing machines
Controlled drugs Controlled drugs specified in the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971, as amended, and the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 as amended, including cocaine, diamorphine (heroin), morphine, opium, cannabis, amphetamine, lysergide (LSD), barbiturates and many others.

You can find a list of controlled drugs and their classification under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 on the Home Office website. This list is not exhaustive.
Drug precursor chemicals Any drug precursor chemicals within categories 1, 2a, 2b, 3 and 4 of the Council Regulation (EC) No.111/2005 as enacted by The Controlled Drugs (Drug Precursors) (Community External Trade) Regulations 2008.

Find out more about precursor chemical licensing.
Toxic chemicals Chemicals under Schedule 1 of the Chemical Weapons Convention’s (CWC) Schedules of Chemicals.

For more information you should contact Department for Business and Trade (DBT).
Endangered species (CITES-listed endangered animals and plants or their products) Any animal or plant species, and their parts or derivatives, that are on the CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) list (see Species+ website).

Any specimen of a species included in Annexes A to D of Council Regulation (EC) No 338/97 on the protection of species of wild fauna and flora by regulating trade therein (‘Council Regulation (EC) No 338/97’).

‘Species’ and ‘specimen’ have the same meaning as in Article 2 of Council Regulation (EC) No 338/97.
Fishery products Any products for which a catch certificate (and processing statements and storage documents if applicable) will need to be submitted in advance of importing fish into the UK.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has more information for fisheries businesses on its website.
Marketing standards — fertilisers Solid ammonium nitrate fertilisers when the following applies:

• a nitrogen content of more than 28% of its weight
• in a consignment weighing 500 kilograms or more

Defra has more information on manufacturing and marketing fertilisers on its website.
Anti-personnel mines Imports of anti-personnel mines and any component of an anti-personnel mine are banned, except for the exclusive purpose of development or training in the techniques of mine detection, mine clearance or mine destruction.

Import licences are issued by the Import Licensing Branch of the Department for Business and Trade.

For advice contact
Explosives All explosives and explosive precursors that have been assigned a hazard classification by a signatory to the European Agreement Concerning for International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road (ADR) and hold a Competent Authority Document (CAD) which specifies the hazard classification and any conditions in relation to the transport of the explosives.

More information is available on the HSE website.

For advice contact:
Firearms Firearms, including some military goods such as cannons, torpedoes and missiles, that require an import licence issued by the Import Licensing Branch of the Department for Business and Trade, with the exception of some air rifles and pistols.

For advice contact
Pyrotechnic articles, including fireworks All imports of pyrotechnic articles for which an authorisation is required for the acquisition, keeping, transfer, storage and manufacture of pyrotechnic articles, including fireworks.

More information is available on the HSE website.
Military goods Items specifically designed or modified for military use including percussion caps, detonators, signalling flares, armoured vehicles, telescopic sights or other optical devices, collectors pieces or antiques.

See chapter 36 of the UK Trade Tariff for more information.
Nuclear materials Under licence only, includes medical radioisotopes.

Uranium ore concentrates, plutonium, uranium 233, uranium enriched in isotopes 233 or 235, natural uranium and mixtures, compounds and alloys containing any of the foregoing, including spent or irradiated nuclear reactor fuel elements (cartridges) can only be imported into the UK from outside the EU under a licence issued by the Office for Nuclear Regulation.

See chapters 28 and 84 of the UK Trade Tariff for more information.
Offensive weapons Offensive weapons which are designed to kill or inflict serious injury and do not have a legitimate use are banned or restricted from being imported into the UK.

Some organisations may import offensive weapons under licence. Find out more information about importing offensive weapons.
Realistic imitation firearms Realistic imitation firearms imported for a valid reason, that appear so realistic that a person cannot easily tell that they are not real, may be imported under licence issued for the exclusive purpose of historic events, film props etc.

Find out more information in the Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 (Sections 36 and 27).
Torture equipment Some organisations may import torture equipment under licence issued when goods are to be used for the exclusive purpose of public display in a museum in view of their historic significance.

Import licences are issued by the Import Licensing Branch of the Department for Business and Trade.

For advice contact
Ozone depleting substances and hydrofluorocarbons Imports of ozone depleting substances (ODS) and hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and are controlled under the Montreal Protocol (MP).

HFCs imported, either in bulk or contained in products or equipment, by businesses registered on the GB HFC registry.

ODS imported under licence.

For more information, see guidance from the Environment Agency on F gas and ODS rules.
Rough diamonds Diamonds

Trade in rough diamonds is regulated by the Kimberley Process (KP) Certification Scheme.

For updates and more information read the guidance on trading in rough diamonds.

For advice contact the Government Diamond Office at
Anti-dumping duty and countervailing duties Products subject to anti-dumping duty and countervailing duty measures. This covers a range of goods, including but not limited to products from the following sectors:

• fertilisers
• biodiesel
• ceramics
• steel
• aluminium
Steel safeguards Steel and steel products subject to tariff safeguards relating to their importation.

See chapters 72 and 73 of the UK Trade Tariff for more information.
Sanction goods and weapons of mass destruction related goods Find a list of UK sanctions currently in place.

Goods subject to UK sanctions or specific goods subject to import licencing controls under UK sanctions (for example Iran and North Korea).

This covers a range of goods, including some products from chapters 27, 28, 44, 69, 71 and 76 of the UK Trade Tariff.

Updates to this page

Published 27 July 2020
Last updated 29 August 2023 + show all updates
  1. Added information to show arrangements for movements from Ireland and in some cases Northern Ireland and Great Britain are changing from 31 January 2024.

  2. Department for International Trade (DIT) has now changed to the Department for Business and Trade (DBT).

  3. Information about goods that are controlled when imported into Great Britain from the EU or Ireland and when a delayed supplementary declaration can be made from 1 January 2022 has been updated.

  4. The last date that you can record goods in your own records without getting authorisation in advance if you import goods which are not controlled into Great Britain from the EU has been changed from 30 June 2021 to 31 December 2021.

  5. This list has been updated to provide more detail about which goods are controlled when imported into Great Britain from the EU from January 2021.

  6. First published.

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