Inward processing

Inward processing means that duty unpaid goods not originating from the EU are imported into the European Union from other countries; they are then processed in the EU and exported again. Processing in this connection means finishing and working the goods as well as their repair.

Although the goods are brought into the European Union in this case no duties are raised and no commercial policy measures are applied. What is reached by this is that the inward-processing procedure helps to preserve jobs in the EU and to promote the strength of European enterprises and products in other countries not belonging to the EU.

How is inward processing handled ?

Inward processing is possible in two ways:

  • Customs suspensive procedure (AV/S). The non-Community goods are put under the inward-processing procedure, no import duties are raised and no commercial policy measures are applied and they are exported afterwards.
  • Drawback procedure system (AV/R). The goods are left into free circulation after the import duties were paid and after relevant commercial policy measures were applied. After the orderly inward processing and the export of the goods, the import duties are remitted or reimbursed on request.

In cases of inward processing legal advice can avoid a lot of trouble. As the customs authorities are not raising the normal import duties, they are very strict with the relevant provisions for this procedure. In case of infringements the authorities are not only raising the import duties due, but are also imposing administration fines and possibly will investigate for criminal offence.

If inward processing is allowed, special requirements have to be complied with, which should not be underestimated. Our lawyers specialized in customs questions are pleased to assist you in this regard.