FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)

When do I need a Surveillance Document? 

You will need a surveillance document to import any:

     Iron and steel products whose commodity code is listed in Annex I to the EU Implementing Regulation 1092 of 2017​.  

      Aluminium products whose commodity code is listed in Annex I to EU Implementing Regulation 640 of 2018. 

The requirement applies to those goods arriving for customs clearance into Malta or the EU and whose net weight is over 2,500 kg or 5,000kg for products falling under HS heading 7318.


 

Where can I find a copy of Annex I and a list of these commodity codes? 

For steel and iron products refer to Annex I of Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2017/1092.  For aluminium products refer to Annex I to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/640​


 

Do I need a surveillance document if my goods originate in Europe? 

No. You do not need a surveillance document to clear your goods if they were made in the European Union or in Iceland, Liechtenstein or Norway. 


 

Do I need a surveillance document if my goods fall under one commodity code with a net weight of less than 2,500kg? 

No. You do not need a surveillance document if your goods are covered by the same commodity code, originate from the same country and have a net weight of less than 2,500 kg or 5,000 kg for goods falling under HS heading 7318.


 

Do I need a surveillance document if I am importing a range of goods of one country of origin under a number of commodity codes and whose combined weight is over 2,500 kg? 

You need a surveillance document only where the total weight of goods under an individual commodity code weighs 2,500 kg or more or 5,000 kg or more for goods with HS heading 7318, per country of origin.


 

What if I am importing a range of goods under a number of commodity codes and the net weight under each commodity code is 2,500 kg or more? 

You will need a surveillance document for each commodity code and each country of origin where the total weight of goods under each individual licensable commodity code weighs 2,500 kg or more, or in the case of goods with HS heading 7318, the weight is 5,000 kg or more.


 

How long is the surveillance document valid for?

Surveillance documents have a four-month validity period which may be renewed for a further four months if not fully used. 


 

Do I need a surveillance document for each shipment? 

No. An application can cover more than one proposed import from the same exporter, provided the goods being imported are of the same commodity code and have the same country of origin, and provided that the amount on the application can be backed by a pro-forma invoice or a sales/purchase contract showing the intention to import said amount. The surveillance document can be used to clear various shipments during its four month validity (until it is exhausted).


 

I placed an order for 10,000 kg of goods under one of the commodity codes and have an invoice for this order. However, I intend to import them in a number of different shipments, each being under the 2,500 kg weight limit. Do I need a surveillance document? 

Whilst if the weight of each shipment under each commodity code is less than 2,500kg, a surveillance document will not be required at customs clearance, deliberate splitting an order into several shipments under the weight threshold could be seen as circumvention of import controls. You are thus advised to apply for a surveillance document for the entire order that you will be importing into the EU.


 

Do I need a surveillance document if my goods are entered in a Customs warehouse?

No, you do not need a surveillance document to enter goods into a customs warehouse.


 

How do I get a Surveillance Document? 

Applications for Surveillance Documents are to be made through an electronic application form​which can be accessed from the commerce.gov.mt website or servizz.gov.mt. The required information is to be typed into the eform. The form is to be signed electronically and the supporting documentation uploaded. Then it can be submitted.  You will be presented with a copy of your submission for your records. The Commerce Department will contact you if additional information or clarifications are required. Otherwise, you will be informed that the Surveillance Document has been issued and is ready for collection. 


 

How much does licence surveillance document cost? 

There is no charge for the issuing of a surveillance document. 


 

How long will it take for the surveillance document to be issued? 

The Import /Export Licensing Unit within the Commerce Department aims to issue the licence within a maximum of five working days of receipt of a completed application. 


 

If the value of my order changes after I receive my licence do I need to apply for a new licence

Your licence remains valid, and does not require amendment, if the unit price and/or net weight of the import is within a 5% tolerance. Therefore, you can use your existing licence where the difference in value comprises up to a 5% change in the unit price and / or up to a 5% change in the net weight.


 

Where can I address my enquiries or reach out for support in compiling an application?

You can address emails to surveillance.cd@gov.mt or call 21.266.668 and ask for the Import/Export Unit.