Most import and export customs declarations rely on a classification system that defines goods and assigns each a 'commodity code'. All commodity codes and the customs measures which apply to them are collected in a publication called the Integrated Tariff of the United Kingdom. This document, also known as the Tariff, is HM Revenue & Customs' (HMRC's) authoritative guide to:
- duties such as customs duties, anti-dumping duties and preferential duty rates
- taxes and other levies such as excise and VAT rates
- rebates and tax relief schemes
- licences that importers and exporters may have to apply for in order to trade in those goods in general, or with a particular country, or within a permitted quota
HMRC's Tariff contains this classification information for all goods. It also provides notes on how goods are classified, showing what special conditions such as prohibitions may apply to particular goods.
All entries in the Tariff are classified according to strict definitions, ensuring that goods are accurately described. Browsing through these is how you can find a commodity code for any product being traded. Find out more on how the Tariff classifies goods.
Features of the online UK Trade Tariff
The UK Trade Tariff allows you to look online for the commodity codes of the goods you export and import. Results are presented in an easy-to-use format, allowing you to find the most important information on your goods quickly.
The UK is in a customs union with all the other member states of the European Union (EU) and has many customs procedures in common. The UK Trade Tariff is based on the EU's TARIC database and also includes additional UK-specific measures.
Duty rates and other customs measures are frequently changed or updated. This means that you will need to keep abreast of changes relating to your product(s). The UK Trade Tariff provides the most accurate information at any given time receiving daily updates direct from TARIC.
How to find your commodity
Traders can use the UK Trade Tariff to classify goods and find detailed information such as commodity descriptions, duty rates, VAT and excise rates, preferential trade agreements and restrictions on goods, licences and permits. You can search the Tariff database for particular terms describing your product to work out which are the closest matches to your goods.
The UK Trade Tariff offers users a wide range of tools and features to make finding and storing information easier. Help links will aid you in the classification process and provide additional information, such as guides to some goods that are difficult to classify. Helplines and links to other international trade websites provide further information and guidance.