Difference between 'Importing Goods' and 'buying a few items for resale'?

Discussion in 'Accounts & Finance' started by André, Jan 13, 2021.

  1. André

    André UKBF Contributor Free Member

    73 0
    If a non-VAT registered UK-based Sole Trader buys, say ten games consoles from Amazon France, does this mean he is now officially 'Importing Goods'?

    Or can he just buy the goods from Amazon as if he were a normal consumer and resell them without all the red tape associated with importing goods?
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: André Member since: Aug 21, 2005
    #1
  2. DontAsk

    DontAsk UKBF Ace Free Member

    1,674 254
    You buy a few, you sell a few. Where's all this red tape?

    If they get stuck in customs then you pay the duty/VAT/handling charge/whatever to get them out.

    It's probably not the most efficient way of doing business.

    If you want to buy a container load then you would want to do things differently.
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: DontAsk Member since: Jan 7, 2015
    #2
  3. Mr D

    Mr D UKBF Legend Free Member

    26,286 3,218
    Sure you can buy the goods then sell them 2nd hand. Nothing stopping you.
    Either way you pay whatever the government require in duty and VAT if importing.

    If doing so as a consumer you get to pay out of your own money. If doing so as a business then the payment is a business expense and reduces the profits and therefore tax.
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: Mr D Member since: Feb 12, 2017
    #3
  4. André

    André UKBF Contributor Free Member

    73 0
    Thank you for your reply.

    The red tape I was referring to is the EORI Number, customs declaration, commodity code, delayed/reduced duty payments and other items described in the various online articles about importing goods into the UK. It certainly seems like overkill for what I propose doing, but it's unclear why buying a few items from Amazon France does not count as Importing Goods.
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: André Member since: Aug 21, 2005
    #4
  5. André

    André UKBF Contributor Free Member

    73 0
    So, if I understand correctly:
    • It doesn't matter whether I buy 'small-scale' from Amazon France or in bulk from a distributor, they're both referred to as 'Importing Goods' and as such the goods will be subject to the same rules regarding import duty & VAT.
    Would I be correct in saying that the difference is that when buying from an online retailer such as Amazon, someone will tell me, without prompting, how much duty/VAT I owe, whereas if I buy in bulk then I will have to be proactive and follow all the guidance on https://www.gov.uk/import-goods-into-uk?
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: André Member since: Aug 21, 2005
    #5
  6. Mr D

    Mr D UKBF Legend Free Member

    26,286 3,218
    The difference is buying from Amazon you then sell 2nd hand, buying from a distributor gives you a supply chain and you sell brand new.

    You may get told before delivery how much vat and duty to pay. You may get told after. Or may slip through the net and not be noticed. Amount billed to you for duty and vat should be the same for the same value of goods.
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: Mr D Member since: Feb 12, 2017
    #6