Ancillary Cost Survey (ACS)

The Ancillary Cost Survey (ACS) allows HMRC to publish EU trade data collected from the Intrastat survey on the same common valuation basis as all the other EU Member States. The value of the trade under this common basis is called the statistical value and is the value of the goods plus the cost of movement to the border of the Member State that publishes the statistics. Therefore, for arrivals (imports from EU) it is the Cost, Insurance and Freight (CIF) delivery terms value and for dispatches (exports to EU) it is the Free on Board (FOB) delivery terms value.
In the UK, the ACS is conducted on a voluntary basis and consists of a random selection of businesses from a stratified sample each month. Businesses will only be randomly selected once in any twelve-month period.
The selected business is contacted, asking them to provide details of six lines of trade from the previous twelve months. The main information requested is:
  • Commodity code
  • Value (of intra-EU traded consignment)
  • Delivery Terms
  • Net Mass
  • Country
  • Ancillary Cost (the cost incurred in the movement of the goods, including freight and insurance charges)
Please note: If your chosen lines of trade do not include the above elements you will be unable to use them in the survey.
An online form is available for submission of the requested data.

Use of ACS results

From the data collected in the ACS, the ‘Ancillary Cost Factors’ are calculated assuming there is a relationship between the net mass of the consignment and the ancillary costs for each particular delivery term and country. These are calculated once a year and then used to adjust declared invoice values to statistical values for the following year.