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HMRC internal manual

VAT Export and Removal of Goods from the UK

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HM Revenue & Customs
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Examples of various export scenarios and VAT treatments: Indirect exports

A UK VAT registered business invoices goods to an overseas customer. A freight forwarder employed by the overseas customer collects the goods from the UK supplier and exports them to a destination outside the EC. See VEXP20300 for a definition of overseas customer.

Diagram of indirect export

This is a straightforward example of an indirect export

  • the overseas customer arranges for the collection and delivery of the goods to a destination outside the EC
  • there is no connection between the UK supplier and the overseas customer
  • The supply may be zero-rated under regulation 129 of the VAT Regulations 1995 provided the conditions in Notice 703 are met.
  • similarly, if the overseas customer collects the goods and exports them (e.g. as Merchandise in Baggage) the supply may be zero-rated under regulation 129.