Customs valuation was the topic chosen for my master’s thesis which I recently wrote, more specifically the transaction value method and the lack of legal certainty caused by the legislation currently in place. I discussed aspects of the legislation that can be seen as problematic when considering the legal certainty, such as the ‘domestic sale’ principle, sales in a chain transaction, and multiple sales when goods are placed in a customs warehouse.
These problems were partially caused by the wording found in the old version of the guidance on customs valuation. Finally the new version was published and it covers the main points discussed in my thesis, for example, the abolishment of the ‘domestic sale’ principle. Moreover, it now states that in a series of sales (chain transactions), the transaction value method can only be used if the importer has access to the invoice used in that sale. Lastly, when multiple sales occur while goods are placed in a customs warehousing, only the sale that was concluded closest to the moment of the introduction of the goods into the EU territory is the relevant sale for declaring the customs value under the transaction value method.