Transit and other suspensive regimes

Common terms and processes in Community and Common Transit

This page explains the most commonly used terms and processes in the customs Community Transit (CT) and Common Transit procedures and includes guidance on the areas that the process covers. CT procedure is used to move goods not in free circulation within the European Union (EU).

Common Transit extends the CT procedure to both Community and non-Community status goods moving to, from, through or between the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries.

Use the goods checklist to see the appropriate transit procedure for your goods. See movement of goods under Community Transit.

Community Transit (CT) covers movements between:

  • the territory of the EU
  • the special territories of the EU
  • San Marino
  • Andorra

Common Transit covers movements between:

  • the territory of the EU
  • EFTA countries

Contracting Parties for the Common Transit Convention are the EU and the EFTA countries (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland).

Andorra and San Marino are outside both the EU and EFTA, but CT is required when moving goods to or from San Marino and when moving goods of chapter 25-97 of the Harmonised System (industrial goods) to or from Andorra. 

The special territories of the EU are the Channel Islands, the Canary Islands, Guadeloupe, Martinique, French Guiana, Reunion, Mount Athos and the Aland Islands.

Goods moving under the CT procedure have a defined status:

  • The external CT (T1) status applies to the movement of non-Community goods. It also applies in certain circumstances to the export of Community goods, where a refund of duties applies - eg Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) goods and Whisky.
  • The internal CT (T2) status applies to Community goods moving from one Member State to or through an EFTA country, Community goods moving to or from San Marino or Community goods to or from Andorra (this only applies to goods of Tariff Chapters 25 to 97 of the Harmonised System - industrial goods).
  • The internal CT (T2F) status applies to Community goods moving to/from or between the special territories.

Payment of customs duty and other charges is suspended while goods are in Community or Common Transit. A guarantee must be provided to secure any potential customs debt - ie the value of duties and other charges.

Customs treatment of goods carried by sea in the Community differs according to whether the goods are carried on an authorised regular shipping service or a 'non-regular shipping service'. Goods carried by an authorised regular service are deemed to be Community goods and do not need proof of their status. However, any non-Community goods carried are subject to the CT procedure and require a guarantee.

The European Commission's Transit Manual gives full guidance on all aspects of Community and Common Transit. Access the Transit Manual.