Importing from Norway to the UK: A Guide for Business

Despite its immediate proximity to our European Scandinavian counterparts, Norway is in fact not a member state of the European Union. It does however maintain connections through its membership in the European Economic Area (EEA) and has free trade agreements with a number of countries as part of its membership in the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).

 

With strong markets it’s actually one of the UK’s biggest trading partners, and thanks to its supplies of oil and gas, Norway has the second highest wealth per capita. This in turn means that if you’re looking to start working with a new supplier, or you want to widen your business’ trade options, then Norway could be a great move.

 

That being said though, the last thing you want to do is ruin these new opportunities by incorrectly importing your goods and causing holdups for your business. This is where this TNT guide to importing from Norway to the UK can come in useful for you.

Top UK Imports from Norway

First of all, to give you a clearer idea of what potential there is for imports, here’s some of the top UK imports, according to worldsrichestcountries.com:

 

  • Oil
  • Machines, engines, pumps and their related parts
  • Medical equipment
  • Paper
  • Chemicals
  • Different types of electronic equipment
  • What you need for Imports

 

While Norway’s free trade agreements mean it maintains similar procedures to importing from other EU nations, there are still some differences of which to be aware. Further details about the overall risks involved are detailed in this useful Government document ‘Overseas Business Risk – Norway’. Your imports could need the following:

Documentation

You will need to complete a commercial invoice as this can determine clearly what goods you are importing, their value and the agreed conditions between the buyer and seller. These are also important for ensuring you pay the right VAT and duties (see below).

Depending on what your imported goods are, you may also need an import licence. A breakdown of this can be found on gov.uk here.

There’s also a possibility you may need to declare your goods to HMRC using a Single Administration Document (SAD). This can be submitted through the CHIEF system or ‘Customs Handing of Import and Export Freight’.

 

VAT and Duties

Your business should be VAT registered so you pay the right amount on your imports. This also ensures you don’t incur any other charges and duties on your goods when they’re in Norway.

The Right Classifications

With the above classifications on your commercial invoice, you need to ensure these are recorded with the right commodity code. To find out which one you need you can use this Government search tool.

 

Restricted items

Like with any shipping from overseas, there will be restricted items. Also despite Norway’s free trade agreements, this is mainly for industrial and commercial purposes, so it’s worth checking before you agree to work with a supplier. Other UK import restrictions can be found on this list.

 

Shipping Options

Along with the above, you should also consider the method of transportation for your goods. As alluded to above, Norway has the benefit of being relatively close to the UK and travel by sea is one of their major trade routes. That being said, this can be quite a slow method so you might want to consider air travel as well, although this can be more expensive.

 

The Easy Option

An alternative to consider with this is to use TNT’s services for your Norwegian imports. We are experts in international deliveries and can of course manage these for you; saving you time and effort.