ATA carnet for temporary exports

When you need to export an item to a non-EU country temporarily, you can use an ATA carnet. With an ATA carnet, you will not have to pay import duties, plus you avoid delays and red tape at the border. You can apply for one at KVK. The ATA carnet in effect a passport for your goods. You can use it for temporary exports of, for example:
  • samples and promotion materials;
  • exhibition materials;
  • tools for maintenance, repair and service work;
  • photography, video and filming equipment, musical instruments, stage and theatre attributes and props.

Order your ATA-carnet at KVK (in Dutch)

Example: how does an ATA carnet work?

You want to visit a trade show in Russia, and show your machinery. The Russian customs authorities want you to pay import duties on the machines. But because your machines are only going to be staying in Russia for a short while, and you have an ATA carnet, you will not have to pay. The ATA carnet is made up of a number of slips that customs officers can stamp:
  • first movement: export from the Netherlands;
  • second movement: import into Russia;
  • third movement: export from Russia;
  • final movement: import into the Netherlands.
The stamped slips enable the Russian customs officers to check that your goods have left Russia.

Why use an ATA carnet?

If you have an ATA carnet, you do not have to pay VAT, import duties or deposits. Also, having to use only one document simplifies customs procedures.

How much does an ATA carnet cost?

You pay an administrative fee of €220,- for an ATA-carnet. On top of that, you pay a premium based on the value of your goods. KVK will issue you with an invoice for the entire amount.

Validity of the ATA carnet

You can import, export and transit certain goods without limitations for 1 year using the ATA carnet. The ATA carnet is valid in all countries that have signed the ATA convention. One condition for using the ATA carnet is that you need the goods for professional use, so not for private use. To validate the ATA carnet, you need to lodge an export declaration at your regional customs office, or at the airport. The ATA carnet is the declaration form.


To apply for an ATA carnet, you need a account. Once you have made your account and KVK has approved it, you can start your ATA carnet application. If your application is complete, you will receive the ATA carnet by registered post within 3 to 5 working days.

Return the ATA carnet to KVK

After you have used the ATA carnet, you have to return it to KVK. KVK has to be able to demonstrate that you have returned the goods. Your ATA carnet expires after 1 year. If you still have the ATA carnet in your possession, KVK will send you a written request to return it. The ATA carnet is a valuable document. Return it by registered mail to: 

KVK, t.a.v. Afdeling Carnets, Postbus 2852, 1000 CW Amsterdam

Useful links

ATA carnet convention members

World Customs Organization information on the ATA-carnet

Temporary export without an ATA carnet

Are you travelling to a country that is not on the ATA convention list? You can still make use of temporary import rules. The Netherlands Enterprise Agency RVO ‘landenoverzicht’ gives information per country on how to arrange temporary imports. Be sure to plan some extra time for your customs dealings. And put aside money for deposits for import duties and VAT. How does it work?
  1. Before departure

    Lodge an export declaration at Dutch customs. Provide a clear list of goods (including brands, serial numbers and types). At airports, you can tell the customs officer what products you wish to export. If you are sending the goods by rail, ship or lorry, you need to lodge the declaration electronically. You can hire a logistic service provider to do this on your behalf.
  2. Upon your return

    Tell Dutch customs that your goods are “Terugkerende goederen (returning goods)”. You will not have to pay import duties, VAT or excise duties.

More information

Do you need more information about documents required for international trade? Read more about export documents.