If you wish to temporarily export trade show samples, sports goods, and work equipment from the UK to the EU, consider purchasing an ATA carnet. Especially if your goods are over a certain value and you wish to move them without paying duty. You can get an ATA carnet to move items such as:
From the UK to the EU, move them back to the UK without paying duty or posting bonds in the EU or the UK.
Each country has its regulations regarding the materials you can import or export using an ATA carnet. For example, in the case of Spain, you will need to provide customs with a bond equal to the duties owed, which customs will refund you once the goods leave the country. If you wish to export vehicle or machinery parts to be made into a final product and imported back to the UK, you will use the temporary admission procedure.
You can get a carnet by yourself or ask your specialist freight forwarder to complete the process on your behalf. To get started, apply online through the LCCI. You’ll pay VAT plus a fee of £180 if you are a member or £300 if you are a non-member. You’ll also need to make a security deposit.
Carnets are valid for one year from the issue date, and you cannot change or extend the dates. If you need to keep your goods in the EU for longer, you can get a replacement carnet.
Find out from the local customs authority whether you are eligible to use a replacement carnet before the original one expires. If your carnet was issued outside the UK, check with the National ATA Carnet Unit instead. You should also check whether the replacement carnet needs endorsement.
After you get the replacement carnet, attach it to the original carnet and send it to the National Carnet Unit. The body will certify the replacement carnet and send back both carnets.
You or your freight forwarder must present the carnet to customs authorities when entering or leaving the country. As a rule, EU countries admit printed items such as advertising material, price lists, and catalogues duty-free. However, problems may arise at the entry point, and it’s best to label such items as “no value” to avoid this.
Countries such as Spain, admit samples of negligible value without charging duty. If you are a business visitor entering the EU with commercial samples, bring a letter from your company certifying that the samples are not for sale.
You can use your carnet as transit documents in place of customs documents. Keep in mind that you still have to meet the regulations on licensing controls and restricted goods.
Fill in all the sections of the carnet , then give the carnet to a customs official to have the green front of the carnet checked and stamped. If you don’t present the carnet before departure, then the carnet may be withheld.
On the return trip to the UK, present the carnet and export goods at the point of entry. The customs officer will check the yellow voucher and stamp the matching counterfoil. If your items are in your luggage, you must present your carnet at the red point or channel.