The Valimaa border station in Vironlahti. LEHTIKUVA

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The EU has imposed extensive sanctions on Russia due to the attack on Ukraine. The sanctions also apply to many consumer products. For example, you are not allowed to bring in extra fuel from Russia to Finland. Persons arriving in Finland by road from Russia and persons travelling to Russia should check the restrictions and prohibitions before they travel.

Restrictions on both imports to Finland and exports to Russia

The entry restrictions that have been in place at Finland’s external borders due to the coronavirus pandemic are lifted on 30 June, and from 1 July there will be a return to the pre-pandemic situation as regards health security. However, Customs’ operations are affected by the sanctions imposed by the EU against Russia, and their supervision will be implemented as a part of normal customs controls.

“The EU has imposed extensive sanctions against Russia, and due to the lifting of the coronavirus restrictions, we want to remind private individuals that the import and export sanctions also apply to them. Private individuals should also take into account the travel advice on Russia provided by the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs, even though the coronavirus restrictions are now lifted,” says Enforcement Director Mikko Grönberg.

The EU’s sanctions against Russia prohibit the direct or indirect sale, import or transfer of Russian petroleum products or petroleum products imported from Russia. Therefore, travellers are for the time being only allowed to bring in fuel from Russia in the regular tank of a motor vehicle. You are not allowed to bring in extra fuel in a portable container or a separate can carried in the vehicle.

In addition, you are currently not allowed to bring in strong alcoholic beverages, such as whisky, rum, gin, vodka and liqueurs, from Russia to Finland. You are still allowed to bring in a restricted quantity of light alcoholic beverages, such as beer and wine, for personal use or as a gift.

Travellers arriving in Finland for example by car or bus can bring in purchases in their personal luggage free of tax and customs duty for a maximum value of EUR 300.

You are not allowed to export so-called luxury goods from Finland to Russia, that is, products with a value that exceeds EUR 300 per item. Such products include smartphones, sports equipment and jewellery as well as many clothes and accessories. Exceptions to this are, for example, electronic items, which have a value limit of EUR 750; musical instruments, whose value per item may not exceed EUR 1 500; as well as certain optical equipment, such as binoculars and sights, the export of which is prohibited regardless of their value. The value limit for vehicles is EUR 50 000.

The import and export regulations of the destination country may change quickly, and you should always check with the authorities of that country to find out what regulations apply. Travellers are also advised to stay updated on the coronavirus restrictions that apply to border traffic in Russia and that the Russian authorities are responsible for enforcing and providing information on.

Source: Finnish Customs

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