Intrastat are statistical returns that report the movement of goods between Member States, including granular information such as mass, commodity codes, mode of transport and other details more linked to the logistics than the tax department. In the absence of customs information for these type of movements, EU countries collect this data to decide on their economic policies.
The origin of Intrastat returns in Europe goes back to 1992, when the European single market was introduced. At that point, movements of goods between member states were no longer tracked via customs documents. Therefore, the system of Intrastat was created in order to provide policy makers with valuable information about trade and economic behaviour.