alcohol exports

Question posted by rex nicholson, on behalf of Beer Solutions in Spain

Im looking at the possibility of exporting alcohol (beer in kegs and bottles) from the UK to Spain. Do i need bonded facilities and export licences?

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Sandra Strong, on behalf of Strong and Herd LLP in M22.

Alcohol is subject to additional controls as it is subject to excise duties even when moved around the EU. If you are moving alcohol from the UK to Spain as a business enterprise (not personal use) then you need to check out the Excise Management Control System (EMCS) - you may be able to access this service via a freight company. EMCS allows excise goods to move in the community and only the end receiver will account for the excise tax.
Some useful links:

You will not require an export licence.
Another national tax is VAT - if you are not VAT registered in the UK that isn't an issue - is you are UK VAT registered then you must find out if your customer in Spain is registered for VAT there. If they are then you need to quote their Spanish VAT number on your invoice and then you don't charge VAT. This sale must be recorded on you VAT return and you must do an EC Sales List. If you customer is not registered for VAT in Spain then you must charge then UK VAT of 20% on the sale.

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dear Rex

It appears to depend where the shipments are to be collected from.
If from a bond duty and taxes would have to be paid unless to
shipment is going to another bond in spain.
When you require some freight rates please give us a call
on 01263 513127 or send us an email ;
best regards
colin ; crown freight ltd

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HMRC Advisor, on behalf of HM Revenue & Customs in G67.

For the export of alcoholic beverages to Spain you must ensure that the Spanish Excise duty has been paid prior to the goods being exported from the UK. Information regarding the United Kingdom’s (UK) requirements for the holding and movement of excise goods in duty suspension within the UK and the European Union (EU) can be found in HMRC Public Notice 197 “Excise Goods receipt into and removal from an excise warehouse”

A copy of this notice can be found in on our website > Quick links – Library, Official Statistics > Publications > Notices, Information Sheets and other reference materials > Excise duties, environmental taxes and other duties and taxes > Yes to open site > Scroll to Subject Heading > Public Notices

Notices are listed in number order.

HM Revenue & Customs
Customs International Trade & Excise

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Ryan Beck, on behalf of BF Projects Limited in BT3.

Hi Rex

I Would be happy to help any freight rates you require.

You can contact me on


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Richard England, on behalf of Consulting for Export in WD3.

Exporting beer in bottles and in kegs into Spain is quite straight forward. As in the UK, if you are importing beer in whatever form into Spain you must decide whether you are going to place it into a bonded warehouse on arrival in Spain or whether the beer is going straight into the bar, restaurant, etc for public resale. In the first instance no duties or taxes are payable until the product is ready to leave the bonded facility in Spain. I am assuming, of course, that you are importing for commercial resale and not for personal consumption!

Again, I must stress the importance of labelling. If you are the importer in Spain you will need to have arranged for your details to be printed in Spanish on each label. This obviously means that you will need to place minimum orders with the UK exporter as there are production cost implications unless you are dealing with micro-breweries. Even in this case there will need to be some form of agreement in place about labels, packaging and shipping. You will need to have a legal entity set up in Spain in order to import alcohol for re-distribution.

All the best.

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