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HMRC internal manual

Oils Technical Manual

Imports of mineral oil: import entry

Import declaration requirement

Import declarations are to be made in accordance with the Tariff (Volume 3, Part 3) on forms C88.

Assessment of quantity for duty purposes

The import declaration is to express the liquid quantity in standard litres.

For imports of oil in drums of standard capacity, the assessment of quantity may be based on invoice details.

For bulk imports by Road Tank Wagon, import assessment is generally simple provided that the documents accompanying the declaration have sufficient detail and the gross weight and tare of the wagon is stated.

Bulk importations by ship may be declared on the basis of the bill of lading or ship’s report quantity, but neither can be regarded as sufficiently accurate for assessment of the quantity for excise duty.

The import account is to be taken on the basis of actual measurement. Most oil imported into the UK is carried in bulk oil tankers and the normal means of establishing the quantity liable to duty is by dipping the shore receipt tanks before and after discharge (usually in calibrated shore tanks). This can be done either by the importer or by an independent firm whose accounts can be accepted for official purposes.

Units of measurement for duty purposes

The unit of measurement of oil for excise duty purposes is the standard litre, and it is essential that the quantity or volume of mineral oil imported is established accurately.

Value Added Tax

The import VAT liability of oil is set out in the Tariff (Volume 2) supplemented by Notice 701/19 (HMRC website).

Such liability is part of the import declaration.

See also the section on Value Added Tax HCOTEG160000 in this guidance.

EU Customs duty

The import declaration (C88) for oil chargeable with EU Customs duty is to be completed to show that the oil is for delivery to:

If the oil is to be warehoused and the importer elects or is required to account for customs duty on importation, the declaration is to be completed with the appropriate warehousing CPC.