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EU import restrictions

There are certain products that require special licenses or authorization in order to be imported legally into the European Union. To check the restrictions for specific products, visit the European Commission's Export Helpdesk.

Textiles, agricultural products, iron and steel products require special procedures in order to enter the European Union. You can check specific requirements at the EU’s My Export Helpdesk.

Imports of some agricultural products must be accompanied by an import licence. These licences allow the EU authorities to monitor trade flows and administer tariff quotas and safeguard measures.

To obtain a licence, importers must apply to the competent authorities of the EU country of import and pay a deposit (returnable on giving proof of import).

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Textiles can be freely imported into the EU – except for some products from Belarus, which are subject to checks (export licence issued in the country of origin + import licence issued in the importing EU country) or surveillance (documentation must be submitted before importation).

Iron and steel products

Imports into the EU of certain iron and steel products can be subject to:

  • Double-checking (export licences against import licences)
  • Quotas

Different schemes apply depending on the country of origin and the type of product.

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