The new Combined Nomenclature (EU Customs Tariff at 8-digit level) has recently been published by the EU Commission in OJ L282 of 28 October 2011.
The EU Customs Tariff will incorporate a number of amendments from 1 January 2012 and consequently a number of tariff codes used for import and export of products will be changed. These changes result from a revision of the Harmonised System (tariff classification system used by WTO countries globally) and also address certain internal EU specific needs.
While the impact of these changes is mainly of a statistical nature, incorrect classification may ultimately cause delays and supply chain interruptions (import and export declarations will not be processed if an obsolete tariff codes have been used). In addition, tariff classification rulings issued by EU national Customs Authorities (Binding Tariff Information) may also be affected by the changes in the new Customs Tariff.
Therefore, it is important that companies review the new Customs Tariff to determine if any of the codes being used are affected by these changes. Traders should also advise their customs agents of the new codes in advance of 1 January 2012.
PwC is currently working with its clients assessing the impact of the upcoming changes on their business and ensuring that delays are avoided as a result of any tariff classification changes.