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Posted Tue, 07 Nov 2023 16:41:39 GMT by
We are a UK business. We have a UK customer who wants us to supply and ship some goods to their German customer's business address, where they will visit a week later to install the goods. These are large bulky pipework products and not possible for the customer to ship themselves. We have experience with exporting goods to foreign businesses in the EU, and my experience says that there will be German VAT payable, and possibly some import duties. My question is, if we are invoicing a UK customer, but shipping to Germany, will this be possible, or will we need to be invoicing a German entity with an EU EORI for German customs to accept the import into their territory? If it will be impossible to ship without the consignee being shown as a German business, could a work-around be that we ask our UK customer to create the shipping documents (customs-invoice etc), showing their German customer as the invoiced business/consignee and their selling prices on the documents? Thanks
Posted Thu, 09 Nov 2023 14:26:02 GMT by Customs oldtimer
Hi Alex Boudry It isn’t uncommon for such a triangular transaction but all parties need to make sure you are clear on both VAT and customs in both the UK and Germany. German customs will require the party importing into Germany to have an EU EORI number. Importing into Germany in your own name as a UK business will be quite difficult as you will need to find a customs representative who is willing to act in their name as your indirect representative. Not many customs agents are willing to do this. If you are selling to a UK entity and they are selling to the German entity before shipping it is likely to be that invoice as the last sale before entry into the EU that is used for the customs declaration. If it is after import into Germany then you need to consider how the goods are valued for customs purposes. You need to check customs valuation rules. It would be easier if the German company acted as importer as the should have the relevant registrations.
Posted Tue, 14 Nov 2023 10:32:09 GMT by HMRC Admin 19

Goods imported in the EU are subjected to the customs charges and declarations as per EU regulations. You will need to speak to the shipping or customs agent to seek advice on what paperwork should be attached with the declarations in these circumstances. 

Thank you.

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