General information about charges

When you purchase a product from another country, you sometimes need to pay customs duty, VAT and possibly other taxes and charges.

Importation or acquisition – depends on the country you are buying from

It is called importation when you bring in a product into the EU (Sweden) from a country outside the EU. When the product arrives in Sweden, it must be reported (declared) to Swedish Customs and you have to pay customs duty, VAT and any other taxes and charges. How much you pay in customs duty, VAT and any other taxes and charges depends, among other things, on the value and type of your goods.

When you bring a product into Sweden from a country within the EU, this is classed as acquisition. Goods that you bring with you from another EU country are mainly subject to the principle concerning the free movement of goods within the EU’s single market. This means that you do not need to pay any customs duty, VAT or other taxes or charges for the goods. There are some exceptions to this principle. Exceptions apply to goods with special rules such as prohibitions or restrictions.

Goods subject to special rules.

Is the country a Member State?

If you are uncertain whether the country that you are trading with is a Member State, you can visit the website of the European Union and consult a list of Member States or search for a specific country.

Country profiles (European Union)

What taxes and charges may you need to pay?

Customs duty

How much the customs duty will be depends on what type of product it is, what it costs and from which country it originates. Certain products have no customs duty at all while others may have up to 20 per cent in duty. The duty is calculated on the purchase price and shipping cost.

The duty is the same throughout the EU, and the general rule is that you have to pay customs duty if the consignment contains goods with a combined value of more than SEK 1,700.


You must always pay VAT on goods that you buy from countries outside the EU, regardless of the value of the goods.

The VAT is nearly always 25 per cent of the sum obtained by adding together the price of the goods, the freight charge and the customs duty. For foodstuffs, VAT is 12 per cent and for printed matter (e.g. books) it is 6 per cent.

How to pay VAT.


The taxes, known as excise duty, that may be applied when buying a product online are alcohol tax, energy tax (incl. carbon dioxide and sulphur tax) and tobacco tax.

Excise duty must be paid for goods that are imported from a region outside the EU’s fiscal territory.

EU’s excise duty area (information in swedish from the Swedish Tax Agency).

Other charges

In addition to customs duty, VAT and any other taxes, you may also need to pay the transport company’s charges.

How to calculate the total price of your product

You want to buy some plastic mobile phone cases from China. The total price you see when making the order is SEK 2,000. To get an idea of what you might ultimately pay, you need to account for the following costs:

Shipping and insurance: SEK 77

Customs duty (6.5 %): 2,077 x 6.5 % = SEK 135

VAT (25 %): (2,077 + 135) x 25 % = SEK 553

Total: (2,000 + 77 + 135 + 553) = SEK 2,765

Depending on the company that transports your product, you may also need to pay an import duty declaration fee or administration fee of around SEK 125.

From SEK 2,000 to SEK 2,765

The total price for the mobile phone cases may therefore be SEK 2,765.

Applicable rules

Last updated:

What is updated: Increased value limit

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