Commercial consignments

 Published: 24.10.2016. 13.58

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Consignments of low value

Consignments of low value – commercial consignments, which are sent to recipient in Latvia from the states that are not the European Union Member States, are exempt from tax payments:  

  • from customs duty – if the value of consignment does not exceed 150 EUR;
  • from value added tax – if the value of consignment does not exceed 22 EUR.

For example, if the recipient in Latvia receives a commercial consignment of low value – one consignment from Russia of value 60 EUR, the value added tax shall be paid for this consignment, but not the customs duty.

Consignments of low value are the consignments made among merchants, sent by a merchant to a private person or that private person sends to another private person for consideration. 

The above mentioned information concerns also the purchase of goods in Internet shops (receiving goods from third countries). 

Regardless of the amount and value of goods, the exemptions from import duties are not applied for the following goods of consignments: 

  • alcohol;
  • tobacco products;
  • perfumes and toilet waters.

The legal acts which determine exemptions from tax payment for the consignments of low value

The exemptions from customs duty in all the territory of Community are determined by the Council Regulation (EC) No.1186/2009 of 16 November 2009 setting up a Community system of exemptions from customs duty, whereas the exemptions from value added tax (hereinafter – VAT) and excise duty – accordingly law “On Value Added Tax” and law “On Excise Duties”. 

Determining whether the prescribed exemptions shall be applied to the consignment of low value, one takes into account only the value of the consignment which is indicated in accompanying documents of the consignment, for example, in post declaration, invoice or other document. For example, if the value of the consignment presented in documents is 9 EUR or 12 USD, the exemption both from customs duty and VAT payment is applied.  

Whereas, if the value of consignment is more than 22 EUR, for example, 25 EUR or 30 USD, the consignment is exempt from customs duty but it is liable to VAT, in compliance with the VAT calculation procedure determined by the law “On Value Added Tax”.

Article 165 Paragraph 1 of the Commission Regulation (EEC) No. 2454/93 of 2 July 1993 laying down provisions for the implementation of Council Regulation (EEC) No. 2913/92 establishing the Community Customs Code determines that all postal charges levied up to the place of destination in respect of goods sent by post shall be included in the customs value of these goods, with the exception of any supplementary postal charge levied in the country of importation.  

It means that, calculating the VAT for the post consignment, the value of the consignment itself and the supply, insurance and other expenses related to the certain consignment are taken into account and are listed both in Article 2 Paragraph 8 of law and in legal acts on determination of the customs value of goods (it is also noted that customs duty is subject to value added tax).