Category Archives: Customs

Proof of the origin of imported products

Questioned as to the difficulty of proving the origin of imported goods notably when the exporter/manufacturer base din the third country has ceased its activity or vanished, the EUCJ indicated last November the burden of proof of the origin of imported goods lays on the shoulders of duty payers i.e the EU importers; who – in the context of their commercial contractual relations- must take all necessary measures so as to anticipate and guard against any subsequent action conducted a posteriori by European Customs.

Although seemingly severe for European importers, this decision aims at avoiding any fraudulous attempts by foreign exporters tending to hide the real origin of the goods so as to enjoy the benefit of a competitive commercial advantage by promising European importers the benefit of preferential (Reduced or even zero rate) customs duties upon importation.

Such a decision impacts the enterprise in various departments such as Purchasing/sourcing, supply-chian and legal.

Russia just about to Join the WTO

On July 10th 2012 the Russian State Duma ratified the Protocol on accession to the WTO. Russia will hence become a member of the WTO on the 30th day once the relevant federal law comes into force.

Within the next few days the Ratification Law should be accepted by the Russian Federal Council, signed by the President and officially published. Continue reading

Holding a BTI

Is the fact of holding a BTI an absolutely reliable legal instrument?

Generally presented as such by the national customs authorities and considered as an unbeatable mean of defense by the operators, the complete legal security deemed to be atatched to the mere holding of a Binding Tariff Information (BTI) does not however resist an in- depth analysis. Continue reading

Customs representation

An often unknow/un- or miss-managed legal issue

In the context of his activity , an operator in international trade must, in his relations with Customs, perform certain customs formal operations and declarations.

To do so, such operator may proceed in two distinct modes :

EITHER, within the frame of a commercial relation, the operator will –by mean of a mandate- entrust an external service provider with the performing of such formal customs related operations and declarations and will therefore decide whether he wants thiscustoms representation to be conducted it to be under the direct or under the indirect mode of representation (as defined by article 5 of the Community Customs code);

OR  internally  (exclusive of any commercial relation here), in virtue of a mandate given to one/several of his employees to perform such formal customs related operations and declarations. Continue reading

The Union Customs Code


The European Commission has recently decided to cancel the 2008 published Modernised Customs Code (MCC), to cancel the to be published next June Implementation provisions of the said MCC and to launch the preparation of recast Union Customs Code(UCC) .

This UCC is to be fully in force (including its implementing provision) by the end of 2020 since it is appropriate to give administrations and economic operators adequate time to undertake the necessary investments and ensure a phased, binding but realistic implementation of electronic processes. Continue reading