Skip to content

Covid-19 - Retrospective applications for exemption from customs duty and value added tax on imports dating back to 30 January 2020 (updated 20 April 2020)

20.4.2020 11.49
Press release

The European Commission has issued decision 2020/491 based on which relief from import duties and import VAT is granted, under certain conditions, on goods imported for combating the covid-19 outbreak. Goods imported by disaster relief organisations can also be exempt from import duty and VAT. See the Customs notification on the contents of the decision: Covid-19: Duty-VAT free import of medical equipment and supplies

Exemption from import duties and VAT can be applied for retrospectively as concerns imports that have occurred since 30 January 2020. You can apply for retrospective exemption by submitting a claim for revision concerning customs duty refund to Customs. Customs will not issue a decision on customs duty refund for repayment of VAT if the importer is an operator included in the register of VAT payers. As concerns imports of this type, the competent authority for levying value added tax on importation is the Tax Administration. The said importers must declare import VAT information to the Tax Administration on a self-initiated tax declaration. Further information on self-initiated tax declarations and correcting errors on tax declarations are available on the website.

You can apply for a customs duty refund either with the Customs form (available in Finnish or Swedish) or with a free-form application.

Applications must clearly indicate that they concern refunds involving covid-19. For example, the heading should include the entry “covid-19”.

Appendices to the application:

  • A copy of the decision that your claim concerns.
  • Any documents that are invoked in the application and that may influence a decision in the matter.
  • Invoice or order confirmation.
  • The number and date of the authorisation required of charitable and aid organisations Authorisations are applied for from the Customs Authorisation Centre with a free-form email application: lupakeskus(at)tulli.
  • When a private operator imports goods on behalf of an operator entitled to preferential customs and tax treatment, the claim for revision must be accompanied by an assurance signed by the operator entitled to the said treatment indicating that the goods are entering/have entered the use described in Commission Decision 2020/491.
  • When necessary, a power of attorney.

Please send the application to the Customs Registry Office primarily by email to kirjaamo(at) You can also send your application by mail to the address Customs Registry Office, P.O. Box 512, 00101 Helsinki.

More information: yritysneuvonta.lupa-asiakkaat(at)

Corona Coronavirus Customer notice Korona