Discharging the transit procedure

The transit procedure is discharged either at the customs office or at the authorised consignee’s facilities. The principal holder of the transit procedure must end the transit within the given time limit and make sure that the affixed seals have remained intact during the transport.

If goods are missing or have been changed, then the transit principal must submit a statement regarding the goods to Customs’ transit follow-up. Based on the statement and the provided proof, the transit principal can provide alternative proof. The transit principal may have to pay taxes and other payments for the goods, if they disappear during transport. Under a standard procedure, all measures for ending transits are carried out at a customs office. As a rule, goods are also placed under another type of customs procedure (e.g. release for free circulation or warehousing) when they are presented at the customs office of destination.

Requesting permission to unload a T transit

Unloading permission can be requested from any customs office open for business and which provides customer service, including the Customs Electronic Service Centre (Spake), when the goods are in Finland. When the transit-goods are to be placed in a temporary storage facility, Customs must be informed of to which facility the goods will be unloaded. The transit declaration functions as a summary declaration for temporary storage.

The Electronic Service Centre can send an email with permission to unload when:

  • the person requesting the unloading permission is not receiving the goods as an authorised consignee
  • there is no customs office open for business and with customer service in the place where the receiving storage facility is located
  • the goods will be unloaded into a customs-approved temporary storage facility or a customs warehouse and registered in the accounts of that storage facility, or the goods are delivered as ship supplies

or if

  • the goods are placed under a subsequent customs procedure immediately after the unloading request has been lodged, or if the goods are subject to a simplified procedure upon importation from other EU Member States to the Åland Islands, and an unloading permit is requested for a T2 transit
  • the goods exit the Union, for example on a ship, which is not in regular traffic.

If the goods exit the Union on a vessel other than one assigned to a regular shipping service, the bill of lading from the vessels manifest or other corresponding information, must be submitted as an unloading report for the goods. Only the final manifest information is accepted as an unloading report, not, e.g. an advance manifest.

A subsequent customs procedure is indicated by, e.g. a customs declaration on release for free circulation submitted in advance, and the customs clearance number of the said customs declaration is mentioned in the request for release as well as the place where the goods are to be unloaded. The goods can be taken into use when a decision on release has been received from Customs.

A requests for a transit unloading permit can be sent by the principal holder of the transit procedure via e-mail to: spake.passitus(at)tulli.fi.

The request must include the following information:

  • Movement Reference Number (MRN)
  • a request to unload
  • information on the place of unloading and the warehouse IDs (business number + the R-extension code)
  • information on possible customs seals and their condition.

If the transit has been started under a fallback procedure at the customs office of departure, then the TAD with attachments must be scanned and sent together with the unloading request. A red fallback procedure stamp in the MRN section of the TAD shows the use of a fallback procedure.

The unloading report must be submitted no later than the following day

The unloading report must be submitted immediately after unloading or no later than the following day after receiving the permission to unload, to a customs office open for business and with customer service, or by email to the Tornio office of Spake: passitusseuranta(at)tulli.fi. Customs discharges the approved unloading report for the transit procedure or approves the following procedure against a submitted customs declaration.

When placing goods which arrive under a T transit procedure under a customs warehousing procedure, the transit unloading report must be submitted together with the MRN of the customs warehousing declaration to: spake.varastointi(at)tulli.fi.

With the permission of the principal holder of the transit procedure, the storage operator can submit the unloading report on their behalf.

Contents of the unloading report

The unloading report can be submitted as data, which shows that the goods have been received and unloaded into the storage facility (or a ship). The unloading report must contain the following information:

  • Movement Reference Number (MRN)
  • possible discrepancies
  • the signature of the storage operator (or ship representative), a signature clarification and the name of the storage facility (or ship).

The report can also be submitted as a separate document. If the details in the unloading report differ from those in the unloading permission message, these differences must be stated in the unloading report. These discrepancies include an excess quantity of goods, changed or missing goods.

Responsibility for the unloaded goods

When the transit holder has unloaded the goods into the temporary storage facility, the responsibility for the goods in the unloading report is transferred to the storage operator when the goods are registered in the records of the storage facility and Customs has accepted the submitted unloading report.

Authorised consignee

The authorised consignee has received permission from Customs to receive transited goods without presenting them to Customs.

Points to consider

Goods sent under a T transit procedure can be presented to Customs after the transit time limit, if the goods are still under custom supervision. In other cases, the transit is not approved as presented to Customs and the transit will not receive unloading permission.

Approving the retrospective presentation of goods

The transit is seen to have been presented within the time limit, if exceeding the time limit was not the fault of the holder of the transit procedure. Acceptable reasons for exceeding the time limit, can for instance be:

  • an accident during the journey (particulars by the Police in the TAD or other document)
  • the carrier has been forced to seek medical attention (doctor’s certificate)
  • the vehicle has been damaged and subsequently repaired (verification on towing and service)
  • strike, avalange or some other acceptable and provable delay.

Based on the report, the customs office of destination assesses whether or not the retrospective presentation of the goods can be accepted.

Release for free circulation of goods not presented

The holder of the goods or the consignee can sometimes notice later that the T1 transit of goods arrived has not been presented to Customs. Then the goods can be released for free circulation with an electronic import declaration where, apart from the usual data needed, the following additional information is included:

  • The code used for the previous procedure is 821 and the number is the MRN number of the unpresented transit
  • In the retrospective import declaration (code R), the additional code FIXXX is used and the following description is to be entered: Unpresented transit

Customs does not discharge the transit, instead the customs clearance decision functions as alternative proof of discharge. 

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