Trade in COVID-19 conditions

On this web page you will find information on temporary changes in the opening hours of customs customs offices and in customs clearance due to the restrictions in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19, as well as recommendations for consignees and consignors. The information is updated on an ongoing basis.

Temporary changes in the opening hours of customs offices

Please note that the following customs offices serve customers during the working hours below, but customers are not allowed to enter the service halls.

Temporary e-mail addresses created during the emergency situation will remain in use until the end of 2021, unless otherwise informed.

At the Sillamäe Customs Office, TIR-certificates are issued only with prior agreement. To make an appointment for customs examination, please call +372 676 2562.

The customs offices are open under COVID-19 as follows

The Paldiski Border Crossing Point is open on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 08:30 to 16:30. Customs clearance is requested to perform through electronic channels

If customer service is not available on site and electronic channels are not available, please contact the Muuga customs office at Veose 4, Maardu or Põhjaranna tee 21 / Maardu tee 65, Maardu.

If you want to terminate the transit, please contact an economic operator with the authorised consignee status issued by customs.

The Airport Customs Office (Kesk-Sõjamäe 10a, Tallinn) is open on Mon–Fri from 8:30 to 16:15, but until 19:30 the service place personnel is available via e-mail and telephone. The service place is closed at weekends, but the service place personnel is available from 9:15 to 16:45 via e-mail and telephone.

Please declare electronically or through a customs agency (see declaration instructions). Business customers are asked to prepare customs clearance via electronic channels.

The opening hours of the Muuga Customs Office have been changed:

  • the free zone border (Põhjaranna tee 21 / Maardu tee 65, Maardu) is open Mon–Sun twenty-four hours;
  • the customs office (Veose 4, Maardu) is open on Mon–Sat from 8:30 to 19:30;
  • the Vessel Traffic Center is open Mon-Sun twenty-four hours and the center's customs officials are available via e-solutions and telephone.

Customs clearance is requested to perform through electronic channels.

The Sillamäe Customs Office and free zone border in Sillamäe are open Mon–Sun twenty-four hours.

Customs clearance is requested to perform through electronic channels.

Recommendations

  • Consignees and consignors are invited to communicate in customs clearance matters first of all with their contractual partners providing them customs clearance services.
  • Authorised consignees and consignors are asked to exercise their rights to start and terminate a transit procedure, instead of contacting or directing their customers to customs officials.
  • Where the clearance of goods involves a trader holding an authorised consignee’s authorisation, the trader should also use the declarant service in addition to the authorised consignee service in order to limit contacts between various people.
  • Please avoid opening TIR-carnets where possible; as an alternative, please draw up a transit declaration and use the authorised consignor service.
  • We would be grateful if you could avoid, wherever possible and as far as possible, contacts with officials and the use of paper documents.
  • Please be prepared for potential delays regarding customs-related activities.
  • We would like to ask you to understand and be patient with any inconveniences the temporary measures may entail.

Important

Changes and additional information

Issue of certificates of origin

Instructions for exporters
  • Exporters using copies of certificates of origin
  1. The exporter/declarant must send the application for a certificate of origin electronically to customs. The EUR.1 certificate of origin/customs status certificate A.TR, together with documents certifying origin/status, will be scanned and forwarded for verification to the e-mail address of the customs office of acceptance.
  2. a copy of the certificate of origin will be signed and stamped by a customs official;
  3. the customs authority will send the signed and stamped copy of the certificate of origin to the exporter/declarant;
  4. the exporter/declarant will forward the certificate of origin to his customer in the importing country.
     
  • If the value of goods of preferential origin in the consignment exceeds 6000 euros

Exporters to whom the approved exporter’s authorisation has been issued by customs authorities will be able to draw up the origin declaration/invoice declaration laid down in a contract corresponding to an invoice or other commercial document.
Information on the application for the approved exporters’ authorisation

  • If the value of goods of preferential origin in the consignment is up to 6000 euros

An invoice declaration/origin declaration may be made out for an invoice or other commercial document by any exporter (does not have to be an approved exporter and no further contact with customs authorities is required).

  • Certificates of origin are issued at all places of customs clearance.

To validate a certificate within a day, you have to send it to the e-mail address of the customs office of acceptance by 15:00 at the latest on the same day.

Once the certificate of origin has been validated, a notification thereof is sent to the business operator. Certificates of origin are validated at all customs clearance places from 15:00 to 16:15; on Fridays from 15:00 to 15:30.

  • Use of certificates of origin (EUR.1, A.TR, EUR-MED) from 1 March 2020 during the COVID-19 crisis in the European Union and EU partner countries. The European Commission has compiled information on the use of certificates of origin in the guidelines „Origin of goods".

for detailed information on the use of certificates of origin, click on the in-text links „EU Member States", „Pan-Euro-Mediterranean countries" and „Other EU trade partner countries". Please bring supporting paper documents attached to the customs declaration for which a time limit for submission has been set to the customs office as soon as possible.

Discharge of transit

Please be aware that in connection with the emergency situation declared in Estonia, it is strictly recommended to avoid contacts with other people and therefore a customs agent (including a consignee, logistics expert, principal or other person involved in the trade), should, from now on, send the documents relating to the discharge of the transit operation by e-mail, depending on the customs office of destination, to one of the following temporary e-mail addresses:

Customs office of destination Code of the customs office E-mail address
Sillamäe customs office EE5130EE eriolukord.sillamae@emta.ee
Muuga customs office EE1210EE eriolukord.veose@emta.ee
Airport customs office EE1310EE eriolukord.lennujaam@emta.ee
Narva service bureau EE5100EE eriolukord.narva@emta.ee
Tartu service bureau EE4100EE eriolukord.tartu@emta.ee
Rakvere service bureau EE5100EE eriolukord.rakvere@emta.ee
Võru service bureau EE4100EE eriolukord.voru@emta.ee
Valga service bureau EE4100EE eriolukord.valga@emta.ee
Pärnu service bureau EE3300EE eriolukord.parnu@emta.ee
Kuressaare service bureau EE3300EE eriolukord.kuressaare@emta.ee

  • In the subject line of the e-mail, please indicate the vehicle registration number and the MRN of the transit declaration.The documents accompanying the goods (invoice, CMR, etc.) must be attached to the e-mail.
  • An e-mail to the temporary e-mail address of the customs office of destination must be sent no later than the arrival of the vehicle with the goods at the customs office of destination.
  • When the documents of goods have been sent to the e-mail address of the customs office of destination and the vehicle is at the customs office of destination, the driver (or customs agent or other interested person) has to notify the customs of destination of the arrival of the vehicle by calling on the phone number on the front door of the customs office.
  • The customs official performs required activities in the information systems and, when it is allowed to proceed with the customs clearance, the official records the arrival of the transit shipment in the NCTS.
  • The declarant draws up an IM declaration. The declarant sends the number of IM declaration to the official by e-mail. The MRN of the transit declaration must be indicated in the subject line of the e-mail, and the message must include the number of the IM declaration.
  • If the IM declaration receives the status "goods released", the official discharges the transit operation. The official informs the declarant of the discharge of transit operation by e-mail.
  • The driver receives from the declarant the information on the discharge of the transit operation, whereupon the driver is allowed to drive to the consignee for unloading the goods.

Starting a transit operation

Please be aware that in connection with the emergency situation declared in Estonia, it is strictly recommended to avoid contacts with other people and therefore a principal (including consignor, logistics experts, other person involved in the trade) should, from now on, send documents relating to the commencement of the transit procedure by email to one of the following temporary e-mail addresses, depending on the customs office of departure:

Customs office of departure Code of the customs office E-mail address
Sillamäe customs office EE5130EE eriolukord.sillamae@emta.ee
Muuga customs office EE1210EE eriolukord.veose@emta.ee
Muuga free zone border EE1210EE eriolukord.muugapiir@emta.ee
Airport customs office EE1310EE eriolukord.lennujaam@emta.ee
Narva service bureau EE5100EE eriolukord.narva@emta.ee
Tartu service bureau EE4100EE eriolukord.tartu@emta.ee
Rakvere service bureau EE5100EE eriolukord.rakvere@emta.ee
Võru service bureau EE4100EE eriolukord.voru@emta.ee
Valga service bureau EE4100EE eriolukord.valga@emta.ee
Pärnu service bureau EE3300EE eriolukord.parnu@emta.ee
Kuressaare service bureau EE3300EE eriolukord.kuressaare@emta.ee

  • In the subjectline of the e-mail, please indicate the vehicle registration number and the MRN. Documents accompanying the goods (the invoice, CMR etc.) must be attached to the e-mail.
  • The e-mail to the temporary e-mail address of the customs office of departure must be sent no later than the arrival of the vehicle with the goods at the relevant office of departure.
  • If the documents of goods have been sent to the e-mail address of the customs office of departure, and the vehicle is located at the customs office of departure, the driver (or a principal or other interested person) has to notify the customs of departure of the arrival of the vehicle at the customs office of departure by calling on the phone number on the front door of the customs office.
  • The customs official performs required activities in the information systems and, when it is allowed to proceed with the customs clearance, the official opens a transit operation in the NCTS. The official sends the transit declaration opened in the NCTS back to the e-mail address of the business operator. Please note that Member States also accept electronically transmitted transit accompanying documents (TADs).
  • The driver receives the information from the principal (consignor, logistics expert or other person involved in the trade), about the commencement of the transit declaration, whereupon the driver is allowed to drive to the business operator, from whom he/she receives the barcoded printout of the transit declaration.
  • In some cases, the driver is also issued a barcoded transit declaration printout by officials of the office of departure (for example, the Airport Customs Office as the office of departure provides customers with barcoded transit declaration printouts for express consignments).

Validation of status documents

We have set up a temporary solution for confirming status documents by e-mail. For this purpose, business operators are kindly requested to send scanned documents to the e-mail address of the customs office/service bureau

After validation by the customs, the documents are returned by e-mail to the business operator in scanned form.

Temporary admission

Disaster relief supplies, medical supplies, surgical and laboratory equipment can be placed under the temporary admission procedure by an act or oral declaration with total relief from import duties.

The relief shall be granted for:

  • disaster relief supplies used in connection with measures taken to counter the effects of disasters or similar situations affecting the customs territory of the Union;
  • medical, surgical and laboratory equipment which is dispatched on loan at the request of a hospital or other medical institution which has urgent need of such equipment to make up for the inadequacy of its own facilities and where it is intended for diagnostic or therapeutic purposes.

Where goods are declared orally, you have to submit a supplementary document (175.04 KB, PDF) as set out in Annex 71-01 to the Delegated Regulation.

Masks to protect against viruses must meet requirements applicable to personal protective equipment

Lately it has become popular to offer home-made masks for sale online and in social media. In light of this it should not be forgotten that masks to protect against viruses must meet requirements applicable to personal protective equipment and such protective properties must be verified and proven.

The Consumer Protection and Technical Regulatory Authority has issued guidelines on the requirements and marketing of personal protective equipment (in Estonian, PDF). The Consumer Protection and Technical Regulatory Authority advises all businesses and inquirers on a daily basis and recommends that everyone first review the guidelines that contain the most important information. A separate email address ikv@ttja.eehas also been set up for obtaining information and advice.

Home-made masks, regardless of how many layers it contains or which materials have been used, must not be advertised as a protective mask and no claim may be made that it helps protect against the coronavirus. If such mask becomes moist it may bring about the opposite effect that would, on the contrary, increase the chances of catching the virus.

Import of personal protective equipment

Additional information

The competent agency that regulates compliance with requirements applicable to personal protective equipment is the Consumer Protection and Technical Regulatory Authority.

Guidelines of the Consumer Protection and Technical Regulatory Authority on the requirements and marketing of personal protective equipment (in Estonian, PDF)

Guidelines for medical masks for manufacturers

Frequently asked questions from the Health Board regarding the wearing of protective masks (in Estonian)

Tax exemption on disaster-relief goods

Exemptions on customs duties and value-added tax are granted to government agencies, charity organisations or assistance units if they import goods that are related to preventing the spread of the virus and that are handed out free of charge to people/officials or that are imported by assistance organisations to meet their own needs during disaster-relief efforts.

In addition, tax exemption can be applied for by government agencies or other charity or assistance organisations if they import essential goods for distribution free of charge to people in need - in such case the goods distributed free of charge may be masks, protective goggles or other goods needed to prevent the spread of the virus.

The tax exemption is applied upon the submission of the customs declaration and any supporting documents required are attached to the declaration. If necessary, customs agencies can help fill in the customs declaration.

Additional information

Detailed guidelines by the Ministry of Finance (in Estonian)

Extension of tax exemption on importation of medical supplies

European Commission Decision (EU) 2021/660 of 19 April 2021(Estonian (133.59 KB, (PDF), English (PDF)) amended Decision (EU) 2020/491 of 3 April 2020 and extended to 31 December 2021 relief from import duties and VAT exemption on importation granted for personal protective equipment and other medical supplies needed to prevent and combat the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak during 2020 (notified under document C(2021) 2693) on terms established with Commission Decision of 3 April.

As a result of that, the value-added tax exemption has also been extended on the same terms to 31 December 2021 on the intra-Community acquisition of the same medical goods by authorised persons and the application of a 0% value-added tax rate to the domestic sale of the same medical goods to authorised persons.

In order for the customs clearance of goods subject to exemption on duties and taxes would occur as quickly as possible it is important to add to the declaration all required documents, including confirmation letter by the consignee (on official letterhead and signed) regarding the fact that the consignee is aware of the importation of these specific goods and undertakes to use them in a prescribed manner.

Additional information

Decisions and positions of the European Commission on waiving VAT and customs duties on vital medical equipment related to combating COVID-19 

Last updated: 03.08.2021

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