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Customs control of hunting weapons and ammunition

This is the synopsis that has been compiled on the basis of the Weapons Act and the Hunting Act of Estonia, home pages of the Police and Border Guard Board and of the Estonian Hunting Association, etc.

  1. According to Estonian national laws, the citizens of any foreign state who hold a hunting certificate and a permit to carry weapon issued in their own countries may hunt also in Estonia. A foreigner’s hunting certificate will be issued to a foreign citizen on the basis of an application of the owner of a hunting district in Estonia or of a person inviting a foreigner for hunting. Hunting certificates are issued by the local environmental offices.
     
  2. Foreigners may bring their own weapons across the border if they have the European firearms pass issued by a competent authority of their home country. A hunting weapon may also be borrowed from a local hunter.
     
  3. Foreigners participating in sports competitions, trainings or hunting in Estonia may acquire ammunition if they present temporary weapons import permit issued on the basis of a written request of the person who has invited them or of a competent authority. One-time quantity of ammunition acquired must not exceed the quantities prescribed in subsection 46 (5) of the Weapons Act.
    A natural person is permitted to store ammunition in the following quantities:
    1) up to 100 pistol or revolver cartridges;
    2) up to 100 gas weapon cartridges;
    3) up to 300 cartridges per hunting gun with a rifled barrel;
    4) up to 300 cartridges per hunting gun with a smoothbore barrel;
    5) up to 1000 cartridges per sporting firearm;
    6) up to 1 kg of propellant per firearm, but not more than 5 kg in total;
    7) up to 1000 primers.

    Hunters or shooting athletes may carry the above-mentioned quantities of ammunition per one weapon with them while crossing the border.
     
  4. A European firearms pass, which includes where appropriate a permission of the competent authority of the state to travel from one Member State of the European Union into another with the firearms and the ammunition therefor specified in the firearms pass, is the basis for the conveyance of firearms and ammunition within the territory of the European Community (look for the quantities under point 3) (Weapons Act § 621 (1)).
     
  5. In Estonia a European firearms pass is issued to a natural person by the police prefecture of his or her residence on the basis of the application of the person if a prior weapons permit or the permit to carry weapon has been issued to the person and if the state fee has been paid. European firearms pass includes weapons used for hunting or sporting purposes for which the weapons permit have been issued. European firearms pass is valid for the term of up to five years. The validity of a European firearms pass is limited by the duration of the weapons permit held by the owner of the weapon, and a European firearms pass becomes invalid upon revocation of the weapons permit held by the owner of the weapon.
     
  6. It is permitted to travel into another Member State with a firearm and the ammunition therefor, which are specified in the European firearms pass if the persons hold a corresponding prior permit of the competent authority. In Estonia the Police and Border Guard Board is deemed to be the competent authority.
     
  7. A person to whom the European firearms pass has been issued need not hold a permit of the competent authority of another Member State, if the person certifies by an invitation that he or she wishes to engage in hunting, or shooting sports in the Member State to be visited. In such case, a person engaged in hunting may have one or several firearms classified in category C or D in his or her possession and a person engaged in shooting sports may possess one or several firearms classified in category B, C or D in his or her possession (Weapons Act § 621).

    SUMMARY

    It is permitted to travel into another Member State with a firearm and the ammunition therefor, which are specified in the European firearms pass provided that the persons hold a corresponding prior permit of the competent authority. In Estonia, the Police and Border Guard Board is deemed to be the competent authority.

    A person to whom the European firearms pass has been issued need not hold a permit of the competent authority of another Member State, if the person certifies by an invitation that he or she wishes to engage in hunting, or shooting sports in the Member State to be visited.

     
  8. If a Member State has prohibited the import of a specific type of firearms, a corresponding clearly expressed notation shall be made in the European firearms pass. The Police and Border Guard Board shall submit to other Member States a list of firearms that cannot be permitted to its territory without the prior consent thereof.
     
  9. Import of hunting weapons and ammunition thereof from non-EU countries into Estonia and export from Estonia is permitted solely on the basis of a special permit granted by the Police and Border Guard Board (subsections 60 (4) and (5) of the Weapons Act). A hunting weapon and the ammunition for which the special permit was issued must be imported into or exported from Estonia by the date indicated in the permit.
     
  10. The standard format of a special permit has been established by the Regulation no 30 of 13 April 2007 of the Minister of Interior Affairs. Part A of a special permit must be returned to the Police and Border Guard Board after its completion.
     
  11. If a hunting weapon belongs to a collection of weapons or if the weapon and ammunition thereof is not permitted for civilian purposes then other provisions of the Weapons Act are applied for conveyance of such weapons and ammunition from one Member State into another. Handling of weapons and ammunition prohibited for civilian purposes is regulated with § 20 of the Weapons Act; Chapter 4 of the Weapons Act regulates the collection of weapons.
     
  12. Estonian Tax and Customs Board exercises supervision over the lawfulness of import, export and conveyance of weapons and ammunition (subsection 88 (1) of the Weapons Act).
17.03.2016