International trade regulations in the metals and minerals sector

Tariffs and duties for metal and mineral imports


There is a range of import-specific regulations to be complied with by all businesses in this sector. The key issues relate to the Tariff, preferential rates of duty, levies charged on aggregates and mining and the Climate Change levy.

Using the Integrated Tariff

A common customs tariff is applied across all European Union (EU) countries on goods imported from outside the EU. Details of specific tariff duties and measures are contained in the UK Trade Tariff.

For information on how the Tariff is important to your import business, read an introduction to the Tariff.

The Tariff is used to determine the specific commodity code of your goods and to discover:

  • any licensing requirements that apply
  • the rates of duty and import VAT that apply
  • any additional charges, such as anti-dumping duties
  • any available preferential duty rates

Preferential rates of duty

The Generalised System of Preferences (GSP) allows products from a wide range of countries to be imported in the EU at a reduced or zero rate of duty.

The European Community has a number of other preferential trade agreements with third countries, as a result of which goods may attract preferential rates of duty.

Find out if your goods qualify for a preferential rate of duty and meet the appropriate rules of origin.


Intrastat is the method of collecting information and producing statistics on goods traded between EU member states. Intrastat is only applicable to VAT-registered traders.

If you are VAT registered and the goods you acquire from or supply to VAT-registered businesses in other EU countries reach the Intrastat exemption threshold for the year, you must submit monthly supplementary declarations to HMRC. Intrastat thresholds are reviewed annually. The current thresholds are £1.5 million for Arrivals and £250,000 for Dispatches.

Read more about Intrastat - reporting the value and volume of intra-EU trade .

Aggregates levy and Climate Change levy

If you extract aggregates or your business is energy-intensive, you need to be aware of the aggregates levy and Climate Change levy. Read more about aggregates levy and Climate Change levy.