Frequently asked questions

Where can I find the statistics for this research?

Statistics on international trade in goods are published on StatLine every month. Several tables are available both by the method of ownership transfer and physical border crossing.

Where can I find definitions of the subjects for this survey?

See topics and classifications.

What classifications are used for this study?

Two classifications are used to classify goods:

Standard International Trade Classification (SITC).
This is a commodity classification created by the United Nations to promote international comparability of statistics on international trade.

Combined Nomenclature
The Combined Nomenclature is a commodity classification based on the Harmonised System of the World Customs Organisation. All structures and codes of the Harmonised System are included in the classification. See also the tax authorities' website.

The Geonomenclature is used to classify countries. This is a country classification created by Eurostat for statistics on international trade.

Why are some statistics confidential?

Some import and export statistics are published only partially or not at all due to confidentiality. This is the case when statistics are of an individual nature and their publication could seriously harm the interests of an importer or exporter. In the case of international trade in goods statistics, passive confidentiality applies. That is, interested parties themselves must apply to Statistics Netherlands (CBS) for confidentiality.

When will the statistics become final?

Due to more source information becoming available, the provisional figures on international trade in goods are revised periodically. In addition, to improve consistency between them, CBS also confronts figures from different statistics. As a result, the figures of this study become final about two years after the end of the reporting year. To illustrate, the figures for reporting year 2021 will become final at the end of 2023.

How far do the figures go back into the past?

The figures for this survey go back to the year 2015. CBS believes it is important that through time as much as possible can be compared, and due to a previous method break has chosen to have the tables start in 2015.