Located in northern Europe, Estonia is not only a beautiful country of over 1,500 islands, but it’s also a hub for industrial and global business. It’s most notably made an international name for itself as an IT leader and was named ‘the most advanced digital society in the world’ by Wired in 2016 and has had more remarkable online developments since. They even produced companies such as Transferwise (now called Wise), Skype, Playtech, and Taxify. As a result, Estonia has a fast-growing economy due to its innovation and foreign investment. In addition, English is widely spoken, making trade with UK companies straightforward. It’s also a great location to trade with Scandinavia, the Baltics, Central Europe and Asia.
As the UK is now outside the EU, exporting to the single market attracts more paperwork, and many rules have changed for customs requirements. Exports are classified as any other foreign “third” country be sure to research your customs requirements for the specific cargo being sent. EORI (Economic Operator Registration and Identification Number) for both the UK and EU is mandatory. Our blog on What is an EORI Number has more.
It is always advisable to work with a customs clearance agent who is knowledgeable of Estonian customs clearance requirements. The Estonian Tax and Customs Board can provide more details about regulations, legislation, duties and tariffs. Products imported myst meet EU standards and include instructions for use. The Estonian Centre for Standardisation (website in Estonian) is responsible for licences and accreditation for goods. They require translation into Estonian and have these attached to the packaging, and failure can lead to prosecution.
Licenses are required for goods associated with mining, telecom equipment, pharmaceuticals, alcohol and tobacco and others.
Post-Brexit, British exports to the EU are counted as a “third country” result in additional duties to export to Estonia. The one loophole is if the goods are recognised by the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement, allowing tariff-free goods if manufactured in the UK and the exporter makes an official declaration. For more guidance or advice, speak to your customs agent or freight forwarder.
There is a VAT agreement in place for some EU countries and the UK, so it may be possible to get zero-rate to Estonia. However, VAT is usually charged at 20% with 0% and 9% applicable for certain goods.
For more information, visit the Estonian Tax and Customs Board.
Transit time frames to Estonia vary but average 7-9 days for groupage, 3-4 days for a full load, and 2-3 days for express. Exact times depend on customs clearance and other factors beyond our control. Discuss your specifications with our team if you need faster delivery.