International trade is governed by the principle of commercial freedom and only some goods are subject to prior inspection. The inspection regime for imports is established according to the country and region of origin, giving rise to different regimes.


Tariff classification of goods implies assigning the relevant customs tariffs code, which is made up of the EU Combined Nomenclature and the customs tariff assigned to each heading and subheading.

Goods are identified and classified with an eight-digit code number. Based on this nomenclature, the European Commission has developed the Integrated Tariff of the European Communities (TARIC). It includes additional subdivisions (TARIC subheadings) for goods with specific applicable customs duty rates.

Each TARIC code comprises 10 digits. The eight-digit EU Combined Nomenclature codes are used to complete the Intrastat form, and the ten-digit TARIC code to fill in the Single Customs Document (SAD).