19.17. Customs and statistical threshold. The customs threshold can be defined as a threshold specified in value or quantity under which customs does not require a goods declaration to be completed. Such thresholds are applied by many countries for the goods acquired by travellers (see IMTS 2010, para 1.49 (a)) and for goods sent by postal and courier services. Statistical authorities might adopt the customs threshold as their statistical threshold for practical reasons. If the trade that takes place under the statistical threshold is economically significant, as determined by the statistical authorities of the compiling country, it should be estimated and included in the trade statistics (see IMTS 2010, para. 1.3). Box XIX.1 provides information on the different thresholds applied in the European Union Intrastat system and box XIX.2 describes a practice for estimation of trade below threshold.
19.18. Treatment of non-response and simplified customs declaration. In general, non-response refers to the situation when an entity responsible for providing information about trade transactions does not respond to the request for the information. Non-responses are usually associated with surveys, but can occur in respect to other sources as well. Simplified customs declarations refer to certain transactions where only part of the usually required information is requested by customs. In both cases—non-responses to enterprise surveys, and absence of the necessary information due to the application of simplified customs declaration —countries are encouraged to estimate and include such flows in their foreign merchandise trade statistics following the IMTS 2010 recommendations if they are economically significant, as determined by the statistical authority of the compiling country (see also para. 2.28 of this Manual). However, in the case where goods should have been declared to customs but the traders failed to do so and, in fact, the goods were moved in or out of the compiling country illegally, such movement of goods would constitute smuggling and should be excluded from the international merchandise trade statistics (see para. 19.15 above).