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guarantees before customs authorities or community organizations

These guarantees are used, within the European Union, as "EU transit guarantees". They allow for goods to be transported through different EU countries without the need for clearance and settlement of customs duties. If a product comes from a country outside the EU and is being sent to an EU member state, import duties are not settled when it enters the EU but when it reaches its final destination country.

Similarly, in the case of exports to a third country outside the EU, after the export duties are settled in the country of origin, the goods may circulate freely within EU territory towards the destination country. If the origin and destination countries of the goods and transport are both within the EU, the amount of the guarantee refers to Value Added Tax (VAT).

A "Customs guarantee" on the other hand is used to avoid payment of import duties when an item must be temporarily imported, for example to be exhibited in a machinery trade fair. It is also required when there is a discrepancy between the customs services and the importer with regard to the applicable tariff; or when customs are settled directly without the intervention of a customs officer.

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