Your guide to the EU market's import rules and taxes

The European Union (EU) is the world's largest single market and the EU Trade Helpdesk is your one-stop-shop to access it. The EU is committed to helping exporters like you in its trade partner countries with the information you need to:

  • Make the most of the trade agreements we have put in place;
  • Bring your products onto the EU market.


  1. The European market

    Learn about basic rules, import procedures and documents required to access the European single market of 28 countries and over 500 million consumers...

    Read more on how the EU classifies products

  2. Rules of Origin

    Find out if your exports can benefit from one of many trade agreements the EU has signed with countries throughout the world.

    Rules of Origin

    How to claim a reduced duty under the Generalised Scheme of Preferences

  3. Statistics

    Check how much of your product the EU has imported since 2002 and from where.



  4. Import duties

    Whatever entry point into Europe you choose, the duties will be collected only once. Check whether you qualify for import duty relief or discount.

    Read more about import duties



    Goods imported into Europe need to fulfil technical, safety and labelling requirements and regulations as defined by EU laws. Find out more about them here.

    Policy areas

    Product related requirements and regulations

  6. Internal taxes

    Value Added Tax and excise duties vary in the 28 EU countries. Find out more and check specific tax levels.

    Read more about EU tax

So, how do I export to the EU?

Watch how to get the best access to the European Market with your product:

  1. Find the EU's import rules and regulations
  2. Import duties
  3. Documents to fill for customs

All in just a few minutes!


I can't wait to take my soya products to the EU market. The EU Trade Helpdesk provides me with needed information to do that."

Bifor Philomina Tanye, CEO Millennium Nutrition Enterprise


  • New update on value-added-tax (VAT) and excise duties available

    Trade Helpdesk now includes the VAT & excise duty rates applying to goods in each EU member state up to April 1st.
    Several EU countries have abolished or reduced VAT rates for personal protective equipment. These rates can be found in the search results upon each product specific search.

    May 12, 2020
  • Modernized rules of origin for the EU-ESA interim EPA

    Since 1st April 2020 a modernized set of rules of origin applies under the Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and the East and Southern African States.

    The amended Protocol 1 allows for "accounting segregation" for materials, replaces ‘direct transport’ by a rule on "non-alteration", and allows EU companies to use REX for their exports to the ESA countries.

    ESA countries are: Comoros, Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles and Zimbabwe.

    April 16, 2020
  • 2019 Trade statistics are now available on this site

    You can now find the trade flows between the EU and non-EU countries for 2019 on this website. You can check EU trade for all goods with all trade partners or for certain product groups with all or specific countries. Figures are available as far back as 2003. Export the tables to Excel in one click.

    April 16, 2020