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SIMSTAT

By 2025, all European Union (EU) Member States will have the opportunity to transition to SIMSTAT (SIngle Market STATistics) in the compilation of foreign trade statistics. This reduces the administrative burden of respondents, as only the questionnaire on the dispatches of goods will be used to collect data for producing statistics on EU Member States. The data on the arrivals of goods will be obtained from the dispatches data of other Member States. As a result of the transition to SIMSTAT, the Intrastat questionnaire will be updated at the beginning of 2022.

What will change in the Intrastat questionnaire as of 2022?

The following changes will be made:

  • as of 2022, the value of goods must be reported in euros only;
  • the fields of mode of transport, delivery terms, place, statistical value and currencies will be removed;
  • in the dispatches questionnaire, a data field will be added for VAT ID number of transaction partner;
  • Codes for the nature of transaction and the Combined Nomenclature will be updated.

The administrative burden of enterprises will not yet be reduced from 2022: we will continue collecting the data on both the arrivals and dispatches of goods and will collect dispatches data in more detail. Unnecessary fields will be removed from the Intrastat questionnaire, but most of these are already voluntary.

Why will a question be added about VAT ID number of the transaction partner?

According to the new European Parliament and Council regulation on business statistics, the statistical authorities of EU Member States must exchange EU countries’ data of the dispatches of goods. A VAT ID number is necessary for the data exchange. The regulation does not mandate abandoning data collection on the arrivals of goods, but it is recommended. Statistics Estonia has decided that if after the transition period and data analysis, the dispatches data received from other countries are suitable, the arrivals questionnaire will be abandoned.

How will the administrative burden of enterprises change?

The goal of Statistics Estonia is to reduce the administrative burden related to the Intrastat questionnaire by at least 35% by 2025. If an enterprise fills in the Intrastat arrivals questionnaire, at the latest by 2025 it will no longer have an obligation to submit it, and the administrative burden will decrease by 100%. The administrative burden of these enterprises that submit both the goods dispatches and arrivals questionnaires will be reduced by approximately 40%. There will be a slight increase in administrative burden for the enterprises that submit only the dispatches questionnaire, as one data field will be added and the entries will have to be more detailed.

How will data be protected?

The exchange of data with other Member States does not undermine data security. The statistical authorities of all Member States are obligated to ensure safe storage and use of their own data as well as the data received from other countries. The data are exchanged in an encrypted form using a secure channel. All statistical authorities are regularly audited to check compliance with security rules. The registration code of the Estonian enterprise that exported the goods will not be submitted to other countries.