Q&As

What are commodity codes and procedure codes from 1 January 2021 and where do I find them?

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Produced in partnership with Victoria Hewson
Published on LexisPSL on 21/01/2021

The following Commercial Q&A produced in partnership with Victoria Hewson provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • What are commodity codes and procedure codes from 1 January 2021 and where do I find them?

What are commodity codes and procedure codes from 1 January 2021 and where do I find them?

A commodity code is a ten-digit code to classify goods for import and export declarations. It is used to identify the applicable tariffs, quotas, duties and valued added taxes, as well as any applicable reliefs or restrictions. It is also used for collecting trade statistics.

The UK introduced a Goods Classification Table setting out commodity codes and the UK General Tariff of duties applicable to imports under the Customs Tariff (Establishment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020, SI 2020/1430, which came into effect at 11 pm on 31 December 2020.

The commodity codes and applicable tariffs are available at the UK government’s Online Trade Tariff search engine. At the outset the UK has retained the same commodity codes applied by the EU but this may change over time.

In the UK, EU and most countries around the world, the first six digits of a commodity code are based on the standard nomenclature developed by the World Customs Organization, the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System, or ‘Harmonized System’. The Harmonized System is governed by the International Convention on the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System. The six digits identify commodity groups in a structured and defined framework to facilitate international data exchange.

Countries may then build on the classification under the Harmonized System to

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