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All web store purchases delivered from outside the EU must be cleared through Customs as of July

26.2.2021 10.00
Press release

The Finnish Government has issued a proposal on how the VAT reform applied in the EU is to be implemented in Finland. As of the start of July, all consignments, including those of a maximum value of 22 euros delivered from outside the EU, as well as consignments crossing the fiscal border in the customs territory of the EU, will be subject to value added tax and customs clearance. This joint EU reform aims at a more equal competitive position for domestic businesses and for businesses in other EU member states. Customs clearance can be assigned to a representative such as Posti or some other transport company or be done personally at Customs e-service.

On 1 July 2021, the e-commerce VAT reform will enter into force in the EU, affecting the everyday transactions of many online buyers. As of 1 July, all consignments that arrive from outside the EU must undergo customs clearance and are subject to VAT. Presently, VAT is not required for small online purchases of a value of 22 euros or less. The reform will also affect goods that cross the fiscal border in the customs territory of the EU. In the future, VAT must therefore be paid also for consignments delivered from the Åland Islands to the rest of Finland and vice versa, and for consignments that arrive in the Åland Islands from other EU member states.

The purpose of the reform is to secure a fairer competitive position for domestic businesses, as well as businesses in other EU countries as, up until now, the VAT exemption on small consignments has brought about a competitive advantage for online sales from outside the EU.

On 25 February 2021, the Finnish Government has issued a proposal on how to implement the e-commerce VAT reform in Finland.

Customs clearance is easy – choose the method most suitable for you

Finnish Customs has renewed its Import Declaration Service for private persons to make customs clearances as easy and smooth as possible. You can also have Posti or some other transport company see to customs clearances on your behalf. If VAT has not been paid previously, it is paid in connection with customs clearance.

“Small consignments can be cleared through Customs just in the same way as consignments with a value more than 22 euros are currently cleared. Often you can purchase customs clearance services from a transport company or some other representative, or you can clear your goods personally at Customs e-service”, says Senior Customs Officer Nadja Painokallio, who is responsible for development of e-services for private customers.

In some cases, a buyer can pay VAT already as included in the purchase price of the goods; more information on this on the website. Also in such cases, the buyer must submit a customs declaration personally or, for example, authorise a transport company to submit a declaration.

Check the customs duties and taxes on your purchases conveniently with the customs duty calculator

You can check the final price estimate for your personal online purchases with the customs duty calculator that was updated just recently. By using the calculator for private customers, online shoppers can obtain an estimate of the amount of customs duty and VAT due before making purchases from outside the EU. The calculator also gives tips on things that online buyers should note for ensuring that their packages arrive without problems. Read our previous notice for more information about the new customs duty calculator.

More information on the customs clearance of online purchases on the Customs website:

Which goods do I have to declare? Check the countries from where goods must be cleared through Customs

Restricted goods – check any possible restrictions and prohibitions before you order products

Customs duty calculator – assess your import duty amount

Declare your parcel – submit a customs declaration and pay import duties

Everything must be declared Press Release