Global Trade Advisory Services


Global Trade Advisory Services

Indirect Tax

Deloitte’s Global Trade Advisory specialists around the world can support you with a wide variety of customs, excise and non-fiscal advisory services to assure compliance and support in optimizing your trade organization.

Our Global Trade Advisory Services include:

Product classification

The Harmonized System (‘HS’) is an international product nomenclature developed and maintained by the World Customs Organization (‘WCO’). It serves as a basis for national product nomenclatures, such as the Combined Nomenclature (‘CN’) in the European Union.

The CN aims to comprise all possible existing and future products, which sometimes leads to broad and unclear definitions. This can result in uncertainty regarding the correct customs classification and potential disagreement with customs authorities. It is therefore no surprise that many customs related legal proceedings involve the classification of a certain product, especially since customs duties on imported goods are (partly) determined by the classification of the product in the CN.

In these matters we offer second-opinions on existing classifications, we assist with requests for Binding Tariff Information’s (BTI’s) and provide full-service classifications of your complete product portfolio.

Our customs professionals have years of combined experience and short lines of communication with customs authorities, allowing them to recognize potential issues ahead of time and resolve uncertain classifications.

Customs valuation

Customs duties due, are partly determined by the customs value of imported goods. Therefore, having a well-founded, solid valuation of your product will lead to fair customs levies and avoids unwanted surprises in a later stage.

The rules regarding the determination of customs value are continuously influenced by political developments on the level of the World Trade Organisation, the European Union, and individual countries. Hence, deep knowledge and experience in the field of customs valuation is required to valuate goods in a compliant way and to optimize the setup of your supply chain.

Our customs professionals have broad experience and short lines of communication with customs authorities in different countries to assist you in maneuvering in the complicated field of customs valuation, in order to reduce risks and seize opportunities.

Origin determination

In the ever growing landscape of Global Trade, Free Trade Agreements (FTA’s) and unpredictable political and diplomatic developments, having certitude regarding the origin of a product is invaluable. As most FTA’s and imposed tariffs are related to goods originating from a specific country or region, applying an incorrect method to determine the origin of a product can result in significant optimizations or disadvantages and risks for your business.

European case law shows that relying on third party statements and paperwork does not suffice as a basis to determine the origin of goods. Hence, a well-founded and solid determination of the origin of goods is required in order to reduce risks and smoothen your trade activities.

We offer advisory services regarding imminent disputes as well as second-opinions on internal procedures. We can assist with isolated questions and matters, as well as with your long-term strategy.

Our experienced professionals can, together with our digital solutions, provide comfort in the complicated field of origin determination.

Excise Expertise

Excise duties generally form a significant part of the costs of excise goods. Therefore, paying the excises no earlier than necessary, in the correct Member State, with the correct rate is essential for the purpose of optimizing your cash flow, and keeping up with competition.

In that regard, the rigid regime and complex arrangements with regard to storage and transport prove a challenging hurdle to take.

Our professionals can guide you through the complicated field of arrangements with regards to import, storage and transport.

With our broad experienced professionals in the field of excise duties and authorizations, we can assist you in reducing risk and optimizing your supply chain and hence smoothening your daily operations.

Support in application / renewal of licenses in relation to customs & excise matters

For companies operating on a global scale, customs authorizations are vital to keep their day to day operations in motion. Being compliant, and obtaining the right authorization, in line with the nature of your specific business, can offer great benefits like reducing risks and limiting administrative burdens.

As an example, being permitted to transport goods throughout the EU without having to pay customs duties upon arrival can be realized with a transit license, storing goods in a warehouse without having to pay the customs duties is possible with a customs warehouse authorization and processing goods without having to pay customs duties for all individual raw materials can be achieved by obtaining an authorization for inward processing.

Considering the legal requirements, applying for these authorizations in different Member States or for new locations/activities can be challenging, with potentially large financial and logistical consequences.

Deloitte’s professionals can offer support with regard the obtaining and maintaining a broad range of relevant customs authorizations to optimize your supply chain.

AEO compliance

Obtaining the Authorized Economic Operator status (AEO) can offer great benefits for your daily business.

There are two types of AEO-licenses: AEO-C and AEO-S, both having their specific advantages and ‘disadvantages’.

An Authorized Economic Operator (‘AEO’) authorizations, leads to fewer physical customs controls, priority treatment with the remaining customs controls, prior notification by the customs authorities to announce controls and recognition of this preferential status by other non-EU countries. In short, customs authorities usually describe the AEO-status as a partnership between the business and the authorities, where authorities entrust the business to perform self-assessments regarding their customs processes.

Aforementioned advantages make the AEO-status a much sought-for authorization. However, in order to obtain the AEO-status, some formal and operational requirements have to be met.

Deloitte’s professionals have broad experience in guiding companies through the entire process of obtaining an AEO authorization, from evaluating customs procedures, to setting up an action plan in order to meet all relevant requirements. Furthermore, we offer tools to help assessing whether you qualify for the AEO-status at any given time. For more information on this tool, please visit the AEO Scan link at our website.

Daily customs operations support / service(desk)

Whether your company is new in the field of global trade, or yet an experienced player: daily operations can always result in unforeseen and complicated queries. Deloitte’s global trade professionals can offer solid support, suitable to the specific requirements of your business so that any risks are mitigated and goods keep moving.

We have extensive knowledge of global trade and we are continuously looking for ways to use this knowledge to support your day-to-day business in a way that suits you best. For this reason, we created an online environment which can help your business with its daily operations and obligations in the fields of tax and compliance. The online service desk is designed to quickly answer any general and country specific trade related queries, given the specific and often time critical character of being active in trade on a global scale.


When being active on a global scale, stakes can be significant. As the landscape of global trade is getting more complex every year, risk of ending up in a dispute with customs authorities cannot be precluded.

At Deloitte, we have broad experience in mediating disputes before they escalate, and turn into legal procedures in court. We aim to improve the relationship between the business and the customs authorities to peacefully resolve any current and future disputes.

However, sometimes, it can be inevitable that a dispute escalates into a legal procedure. In the unhoped-for event of such a procedure, Deloitte can offer support in preparing a solid strategy and hence limit risk, and optimize the opportunity of a good outcome.

Workshop and (in-house) training opportunities

The regional and global landscape of trade and customs is subject to ever evolving changes that impact the activities and day-to-day operations of a variety of players engaged in global trade, including economic operators and local authorities.
We offer workshops and (in-house) training sessions to introduce employees to general customs topics and create awareness regarding the compliant execution of their daily work. During such training sessions, we can address various customs topics that should be taken into account by businesses with an international supply chain. Some examples of such topics are customs implications for imports and exports of goods, customs valuation, origin of goods and tariff classification.

Further, we offer tailor-made workshops that focus on more industry specific customs elements. Topics that can be covered in such workshops include the AEO status, compliance requirements, risks and opportunities relevant for your business.

To ensure that we are able to develop tailor-made training with great added value for your business, we aim to discuss potential topics with you beforehand, thereby ensuring that your expectations will be fully met.