Guide

Introduction to Intrastat

Why is Intrastat important?

Information about the trade between European Union member states is vital to governments and other users, including businesses themselves.

In the UK, the government uses trade statistics to monitor the health of the economy. The statistics are an important part of the Balance of Payments account, supplied by the Office for National Statistics. Trade figures also affect other decisions that have an impact on our daily life in the UK. For example, they may play a part in persuading the Bank of England to change interest rates. The effects of this are felt in mortgage rates, utility bills, excise duty rates, credit card costs and so on.

A number of UK government departments use the trade statistics provided by businesses to spot trends, set trade policy and find ways to help UK businesses. Outside the UK, Intrastat data is included in the trade information supplied to the European Commission, the European Central Bank and United Nations bodies such as the International Monetary Fund.

Your business can benefit greatly by using trade data to assess market share, look for gaps in the market and develop new markets. You should supply accurate and complete data by the due date. Persistently returning inaccurate or late data may lead to you incurring penalties.