As the European Union (EU) is a customs union, you can buy most goods from other member countries without restrictions - although VAT and excise duty can still apply. Read more about trading in the European Union.
If you import from outside the EU, you may have to comply with import licensing requirements and with common customs tariffs that apply across the EU. Read more about importing your goods from outside the EU.
Import restrictions can be product-specific or trade-specific. Many products are subject to product-specific standards and need to be supported by applicable certificates, product-specific licences and documentation.
Quite separately, quantitative restrictions or limitations and anti-dumping duties may apply to certain imported commodities.
Find out if you need an export or import licence.
Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) status
In response to increased security requirements, HM Revenue & Customs introduced a new status for businesses - AEO. While the scheme is not compulsory, companies that meet the requirements of the scheme will be registered as AEOs and can take advantage of the simplified customs procedures that relate to the security and safety of their goods in transit.