When products enter the European Union, they need to be declared to customs authorities according to their classification in the Combined Nomenclature. All products entering the European Union are classified under a tariff code that carries information on duty rates and other levies on imports and exports, any applicable protective measures (e.g., anti-dumping); external trade statistics, import and export formalities, and other non-tariff requirements.
The EU classification system consists of three integrated components. The first component is the Harmonized System, which is a nomenclature developed by the World Customs Organization comprising 5,000 commodity groups and organized in a hierarchical structure by sections, chapters (2 digits), headings (4 digits), and subheadings (6 digits). The second component is the Combined Nomenclature, which adds EU specific codes and information, serving as the European Union’s eight-digit coding system (i.e., Harmonized System codes with further EU specific subdivisions). This serves as the European Union’s common customs tariff and provides statistics for trade both inside the European Union and between the European Union and the rest of the world. The third component is the or TARIC which provides information on all trade policy and tariff measures applicable to specific goods in the European Union (e.g., temporary suspension of duties and antidumping duties). It is comprised of the eight-digit code of the Combined Nomenclature plus two additional digits (TARIC subheadings). Information on the Combined Nomenclature is updated every year and can be found on the European Commission’s website.
U.S. exporters should consult the Integrated Tariff, which is updated daily, to identify the various rules that apply to specific products being imported into the customs territory of the European Union. The Integrated Tariff can be searched by country of origin, Harmonized System code, and product description on the interactive website of the EU Directorate-General for Taxation and the Customs Union.
For tariff rates and taxes of goods, you may also use Customs Info Database Tariff Lookup Tool.