Documentation for customs clearance can be proof of origin, invoice or proforma invoice. As an importer or exporter you have a particular responsibility to submit accurate documentation and information.


For all customs clearances an invoice with specified content is necessary. The invoice must state;

  • invoice number
  • sender
  • date and place
  • number of packages and weight
  • description of contents
  • price
  • delivery location and dates
  • particular conditions related to the invoice
  • documentation of origin/ proof of origin

Proforma invoice

Sometimes a proforma invoice can be used instead of a complete invoice.

It can be necessary to make a temporary export customs clearance. An example is when sending goods for repair and then shipping back to the owner again. 

If the shipment contains samples or small gifts, a proforma invoice can be used as documentation for customs clearance. 

Inadequate information can

  • delay the consignment
  • stop the consignment
  • provide the wrong basis for tax calculation, which again can result in fines
Cem Turkdonmez

Cem Turkdonmez

Managing Director UK