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Practical issues with REX statements including the approach by Dutch Customs


Lately we have found that in several cases REX statements issued in third countries and provided to Dutch importers do not meet the legal requirements and/or are not accepted by Dutch Customs.

For example in supply chains where the company selling the goods (e.g. head offices/sales offices) is not the same legal entity as the producer of the goods (factories). Further also issues occurred regarding the description of goods on the invoice/packing list, the use of separate statements (not on the invoice or packing list etc.), the use of digital communications with statements not in hard copy etc. Actually we found that several exporters issue REX statements that do not meet the legal requirements.

These errors may result in duties becoming due for the company that claimed a preferential tariff upon importation of the goods. Please also note that we have experienced that the customs authorities of the Member States can have different views on what is acceptable and what is not.

REX statements

What does this mean for you?

Because of a rather strict approach by Dutch Customs towards the requirements surrounding the statements of origin under REX, we encourage companies to review the current statements they receive from their suppliers. Especially in the situations as described above.

It is important that the REX statements of origin meet the requirements imposed by legislation as well as the policy of Dutch Customs, as non-conformity may result in an unwanted claim from Dutch Customs.


On 1 January 2017, the Registered Exporter (REX)-system was introduced by the EU to prove the preferential origin of goods under the Generalized System of Preference (GSP). The REX-system replaced the Form A certificates that were issued by the competent authorities in the exporting countries and introduced a system of self-certification.

The REX system would be used mainly for trade between the EU and GSP-beneficiary countries. Additionally, REX has found its way into the Canada, Japan and Vietnam FTA’s. The REX-system has been gradually implemented in the years after its introduction. Companies from both the EU and the GSP-countries would be obliged to register for the REX-system to be able to issue a REX statement of origin substantiating the preferential origin of their goods.

Because of the self-certification, Customs Authorities are no longer involved with the issuance of the certificates of origin. This results in an even greater responsibility for the importer to ensure that he rightfully and with the correct evidence of the preferential origin claims the preferential tariff upon import.

Let’s talk!

In case you need any advice on this matter or require our assistance, please contact your regular trade contact at PwC, or reach out to Claudia Buysing Damsté, Jos Sijbers or Suzanne Bras.

Contact us

Claudia Buysing Damsté

Claudia Buysing Damsté

Partner, PwC Netherlands

Tel: +31 (0)65 103 04 63

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