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HM Revenue and Customs Brief 69/09


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Issued 17 November 2009

Intrastat – Changes from 1 January 2010

This Revenue and Customs Brief explains how businesses trading with other EU Member States could be affected by changes from 1 January 2010.

Changes in Intrastat thresholds from 1 January 2010

  • The exemption threshold for arrivals is increased from £270,000 to £600,000
  • The exemption threshold for dispatches is reduced from £270,000 to £250,000


Community legislation requires the UK to collect information on intra-EU trade in goods for statistical purposes and sets minimum requirements for the quantity of trade covered.

Council Regulation (EC) No 638/2004 (The Intrastat Basic Regulation) requires EU Member States to collect data on a minimum percentage of the total value of their EU trade in goods. This regulation has been amended by Council Regulation (EC) No 222/2009. Please note that the minimum requirement for Member States to collect for their arrivals (intra-EU imports) has been reduced from 97 to 95 per cent. The requirement for their dispatches (intra-EU Exports) remains at 97 per cent.

These requirements determine the level at which the exemption thresholds, which are applied independently to arrivals and dispatches, are set in the UK. Those traders with an annual intra-EU trade in goods above the specified exemption thresholds are required to provide monthly statistical returns (Intrastat Supplementary declarations).

The threshold for arrivals has been increased to £600,000 as a result of the reduction in the coverage requirement to 95 per cent. The threshold for dispatches has been reduced to £250,000 due to the current economic downturn and the consequent reduction in the number of UK businesses trading within the EU. The revised thresholds ensure that the UK obtains the percentage coverage of the value of intra-EU trade required by Community legislation whilst at the same time ensuring that the number of businesses which are required to submit monthly information is kept to a minimum.

The revised thresholds will be implemented by a Statutory Instrument. This instrument is being laid before Parliament in the coming weeks and, subject to Parliament having no objections to it, will come into force on 1 January 2010.

An Impact Assessment of the Simplification of Intrastat can be found at: (PDF 64K)

Other Changes for 2010

The Intrastat Basic Regulation is implemented by Commission Regulation (EC) No 1982/2004. This regulation has been amended by two Commission Regulations to be published shortly in the official Journal. The changes will be applied in the UK from 1 January 2010.

As a result of this some of the reporting requirements have changed as follows:

  • all supplies of goods to British Embassies, Consulates (whether or not benefiting from diplomatic immunity) and British armed forces bases situated in other Member States are excluded from Intrastat reporting (with the exception of the UK Sovereign Base Areas in Cyprus, which must continue to be reported with the partner country CY);
  • emergency aid for disaster areas is no longer excluded from Intrastat reporting;
  • sales of new means of transport by VAT-registered businesses to private individuals in other Member States are no longer excluded from Intrastat reporting; and
  • the reporting Member State (for sales and purchases of vessels and aircraft, goods delivered to them and products of the sea) is determined according to where the entity that has ‘economic ownership’ of the vessel or aircraft is established.

Information regarding these changes will be published on UK Trade info (Opens new window) and in Notice 60 Intrastat General Guide. Where appropriate, the Trade Statistics unit will contact businesses affected by the changes to ensure that they are aware of the new requirement and will work with them to enable them to meet their obligations.

Further information

Further information on trade statistics can be found online at UK Trade info (Opens new window) or by phoning UK Trade info Customer Services on 01702 367485.

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© Crown Copyright 2009.

A licence is need to reproduce this article and has been republished for educational / informational purposes only. Article reproduced by permission of HM Revenue & Customs under the terms of a Click-Use Licence. Tax briefs are updated regularly and may be out of date at time of reading.

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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2009-11-20 10:30:47 in Tax Articles

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