Quick guide for international AOC / Part 135 charter certificate holders or similar
Compare full importation against Temporary Admission
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The description below assumes that the crew is employed by the AOC / 135 operator. The description will cover the typical case where an aircraft is operated commercially by international AOC / Part 135 charter certificate holders. All traffic is non-scheduled.
The description is based on the EU Customs Code (UCC) and various EU directives and working papers. This is in our opinion the correct interpretation of the regulations but all EU member states have not necessarily implemented everything at present.
Full importation is mainly for EU-established entities and it grants free circulation for the aircraft and come with a lot of privileges but does also come with a lot of potential liability and includes procedures which continuously must be handled correctly. Press the button and see the sensitive points. or
Temporary Admission is only for entities established outside the EU and comes with some limitations and no-gos. Press the button and see the sensitive points. or
Non-EU operators capable of using Temporary Admission will have huge advantages. These operators will practically have the same flying privileges as given under full importation as the few limitations does not influence the typical flight and many of the below points will give the declarant more flexibility and extra advantages like unrestricted personal/family/guest use without consequences and no tax/VAT liability anywhere, many of these points are often a huge problem and burden when using full importation.
|Entities involved||Full Importation||Temporary Admission|
|Which entity can be the importer?||Owner||YES, via look- through (1)||NO|
|Lessee/rentee||YES, via look- through (1)||NO|
1. The VAT exemption can be extended to owner, lessee/rentee,Please read more
2. The operator is in general the entity which have the crew employed and provides services to keep the aircraft flying.
|Methods used for VAT and Customs duty||Full Importation||Temporary Admission|
|How is the VAT handled?
The VAT is ranging from 17-27% depending on the EU member state and is based on the value of the aircraft
|No VAT is imposed if both operator and aircraft qualify for exemption||No VAT is imposed|
|How is the Customs duty handled?
The Customs duty is 2.7% and is based on the value of the aircraft
|No Customs duty is imposed if the aircraft is fully registered||No Customs duty is imposed|
|Preconditions & usage||Full Importation||Temporary Admission|
|Is full EU establishment/residency required for importer?||NO, Importer must no longer be fully established in the EU||Importer cannot be EU established/resident in any way|
|Is full EU ownership required?||NO||Owner/beneficial owner cannot be EU resident in any way|
|Is a VAT registration needed?||NO – not relevant as International charter traffic is in general VAT exempt. Reclaiming VAT is not possible.||NO impact|
|Is an importation registration needed?||YES, importer must be registered for importation privileges||NO impact|
|Is it possible to be VAT exempt?||YES, if both operator and aircraft qualifies||NO impact|
|If VAT exemption is not possible, can any VAT imposed during the importation be reclaimed?||NO, International charter is VAT exempt.||NO impact|
|What are the preconditions for the importer to be considered an international airline with VAT exemption?||The majority of all traffic for importer must be internationally (3)||NO impact|
|What are the preconditions for an aircraft to be considered VAT exempt if used by an exempt international airline?||
Meant to be used exclusively for commercial operation (4)
|Is it mandatory for the operator to be engaged in economic activity?||On importation day||YES||YES|
|Continuously while operating the aircraft||YES||YES|
|Is commercial operation mandatory for the operator?||On importation day||YES||NO impact|
|Continuously while operating the aircraft||YES||NO impact|
|What is the impact if the aircraft is actually used for non- commercial operation by the operator?||Renewed VAT assessment. No longer exempt (5)||NO impact|
|If used for commercial operation, has non-business use of the aircraft by passengers any economic impact of the VAT-handling?||Private /personal use||NO impact||NO impact|
|Entertainment use||NO impact||NO impact|
|Does non-EU use impact the VAT-handling||NO impact||NO impact|
|If used for commercial operation, has business use by passengers like corporate flying of the aircraft any economic impact of the VAT-handling?||NO impact||NO impact|
3. The importer must normally have a majority of international flights, the Danish threshold is 55%+. The threshold can vary from EU member states to another.
4. It is a precondition that the aircraft is used solely for commercial operation, but commercial operation is not necessarily charter work as many AOC operators are used to. ‘Commercial operation’ shall mean any operation of an aircraft, in return for remuneration or other valuable consideration, which is available to the public or, when not made available to the public, which is performed under a contract between an operator and a customer, where the latter has no control over the operator’.
5. If the use of the aircraft is changed the VAT will have to be reassessed.
|Traffic rights, charters, tickets etc||Full Importation||Temporary Admission|
|Are traffic “freedom” rights needed when flying on internal legs in the EU?||YES, always if importer is non-EU||YES, always|
|Are group charters allowed on internal legs in the EU?||YES||YES|
|Is it allowed to use aircraft for transportation against a ticket fee in the EU?||YES/NO (6)||NO|
6. Ticket sales requires scheduled traffic rights which very few non-EU AOC / 135 operators will have.
|Persons on-board||Full Importation||Temporary Admission|
|Are EU resident persons with an EU passport allowed on-board?||Crew||YES||YES (7)|
|Are EU resident persons with a non-EU passport allowed on-board?||Crew||YES||YES (7)|
|Are non-EU resident persons with an EU passport allowed on-board?||Crew||YES||YES|
|Are non-EU resident persons with a non-EU passport allowed on-board?||Crew||YES||YES|
7. There are no restrictions if EU-resident crew is employed by the importer.
|Registration||Full Importation||Temporary Admission|
Which registration can be used?
The listings do not indicate whether or not the mentioned registrations can be used for charter on a specific charter certificate.
|The 28 EU member states||OK||NOT possible (8)|
|Guernsey (2)||OK||NOT possible (8)|
|Isle of Man (M)||OK||NOT possible (8)|
|San Marino (T7)||OK||OK|
|Any other registration||OK||OK|
|Can the registered owner mentioned on the Certificate of Registration (CoR) be an EU resident?||YES||NO|
8. The Isle of Man and Guernsey are still part of the EU customs area and for that reason aircraft registered there are considered registered inside the EU even though these areas are not a part of the EU. Aircraft registered in the EU are not eligible for Temporary Admission and thus not allowed to be flying in the EU customs area – not even a single entry in and out of the EU without a full importation. All aircraft using these aircraft registrations must be fully imported at the first port of call in the EU if not already imported. Please read more
|EU stay||Full Importation||Temporary Admission|
|What about flying/staying in the EU?||Flying to one EU destination||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Flying internally in the EU||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Period of stay in the EU||Unlimited||Maximum 6 months per entry|
|Multiple flights in and out the EU||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Homebase or long-term hangarage||Unlimited||NOT possible|
|Validity||Full Importation||Temporary Admission|
|What is the validity of the customs documents for the importation?||Unlimited as long as the operator is the same||Can be used indefinitely if the regulation is respected|
|Export||Full Importation||Temporary Admission|
|Is exportation needed when the aircraft is eventually sold outside the EU or operator will no longer operate the aircraft?||YES||NO|
Press the button and see the sensitive points. or