Some other goods remain prohibited or subject to specific formalities. For example, medicines for human use, waste, plants or live animals.
In addition to the written customs declaration, an invoice and sometimes a certificate of origin must be joined to imported products. The modernized customs code (MCC), entered into force in 2008, simplifies the procedures, for example by introducing a paperless environment and centralizing transactions. However, its substantive provisions will apply only on May 1st 2016. Until this time, the Community Customs Code and its implementing provisions continue to apply.
Since July 1, 2009, all companies established outside of the EU are required to have an Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) number if they wish to lodge a customs declaration or an Entry/Exit Summary declaration.
German distribution is divided between the following distribution channels: Traditional retail trade (24.8%); Specialized hypermarkets (22%); Non-food chain stores (13%); DIY hypermarkets (11.7%); Discounters (11%); Supermarkets (7.9%); Distance selling (5.8%); Department stores (3.8%). Sources: Ifo-Institut & destatis
The three leading German distribution groups are Metro, Rewe and Edeka/Ava. "Hard discount" is the leading type of food distribution, registering growth of about 10% and generating 40% of total food sales. The rise of discounters such as Lidl or Aldi has forced distributors to wage a price war: so, insufficient margins may slow down the modernization of sales outlets and the development of new distribution concepts. Relations between distributors and their suppliers, said to be very difficult, have become even more strained. A trend towards concentration has appeared and groups such as Karstadt (in German), Edeka-Tengelmann, and discounters like the American Wal-Mart are now competing hard, bringing down suppliers' margins.
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Last Updates: December 2014