Wednesday, 8 May 2019

Questions (189)

Michael McGrath


189. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Finance if there is a format that needs to be used by a shipping company in charging the appropriate amount of customs duty including an obligation to provide a detailed written statement in the context of the application of customs to an Irish company importing products from a third country; the recourse the company has if it is not satisfied with the amount charged or the quality of the documentation if has been provided with in order to reclaim a VAT charge; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [20066/19]

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Written answers (Question to Finance)

I am advised by Revenue that when goods are imported into the European Union, a customs declaration is presented electronically to Revenue by the importer or by their customs agent. Based on the information contained in that declaration, the relevant taxes and customs duties are calculated automatically. Customs Duty is harmonised throughout the European Union and is charged on the customs value of the goods i.e. the price paid for the goods plus shipping, packaging and insurance costs to the place where the goods first entered the EU. Further information on this is available on the Revenue website at

Where an importer disputes the rate of duty charged, the Union Customs Code (UCC) provides a mechanism for them to appeal the charge. Revenue’s Designated Appeals Officers manage the Customs appeals and make a determination based on the details of the case.   

VAT is chargeable at the same rate as applies to the sale within Ireland of similar goods.  A VAT registered trader is entitled to take a deduction in their VAT return, including VAT incurred on import.

Where the importer is not satisfied with the documentation provided by the shipping company, the onus is on the importer to resolve this with the shipping company concerned based on the commercial contract entered into between them.