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Importing or exporting for the first time?
20/02/2024

If you are considering selling or buying to or from companies based outside the UK, you may well be overawed by the plethora of regulation you are required to be familiar.

As a first step, you could make use of the GOV.UK website and access HMRC’s “digital assistant”. You could use this to find out about:

  • getting an EORI number 
  • importing your personal belongings
  • looking up commodity codes, duty and VAT rates
  • trading with Northern Ireland

Take a look at this support page: https://www.gov.uk/business-support-helpline

If the digital assistant cannot help you, you can ask to transfer to a webchat with an HMRC adviser, if they are available.

You can call HMRC for help with questions about:

  • importing
  • exporting
  • customs reliefs

If you think you have been charged too much, find out how to claim a repayment of customs charges in the ‘If you’re charged too much or return your goods’ section of the Tax and customs for goods sent from abroad guide.

Telephone: 0300 322 9434

Opening times: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

And if you prefer to have something in writing, you can send a letter for help with questions about importing, exporting and customs relief at:

HM Revenue and Customs — CITEX Written Enquiry Team
Local Compliance S0000
Newcastle
NE98 1ZZ
United Kingdom

Include your VAT registration number and the name and postal address of your business.