Import-Export Taxes and Duties in China

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By Shirley Zhang

Mar. 11 – One of the most important issues facing companies conducting trade with China is the subject of taxes and duties imposed on goods imported into and exported out of the country. This is a complex subject, and rates and regulations differ of course from product to product, however there are general tax principles to follow, and we outline the most important issues foreign companies should be aware of below.

Importing to and exporting from China generally involves three types of taxes:

  1. Value-added tax;
  2. Consumption tax; and
  3. Customs duties.

1. Value-added Tax for Imported Goods
Imported goods to China are subject to value-added tax (VAT), and the applicable tax rates are the same as those applied to goods sold within the domestic market (i.e. 17 percent, and 13 percent for some goods). VAT is payable on the day of customs clearance.

The input VAT imposed on importing goods can be used to deduct the output VAT paid when the imported goods are sold in the domestic market.

2. Consumption Tax for Imported Goods
Items subject to consumption tax (CT) include luxury products such as high-end watches, non-renewable petroleum products such as diesel oil, and high-energy consumption products such as passenger cars and motorcycles.

Import CT is collected either on an ad valorem basis or quantity basis, with tax rates and amounts varying greatly. CT should be paid within 15 days from the day that Customs issues the Import CT Bill of Payment.

3. Customs Duties
Customs duties include import duties and export duties, with a total of 8,238 items taxed, according to China’s 2013 Customs Tariff Implementation Plan (“2013 Tariff Plan”). Customs duties are computed either on an ad valorem basis or quantity basis.

Import Duties
Duty rates on import goods consist of:

  • Most-favored-nation duty (MFN) rates;
  • Conventional duty rates;
  • Special preferential duty rates;
  • General duty rates;
  • Tariff rate quota (TRQ) duty rates; and
  • Temporary duty rates.

MFN duty rates
MFN rates are the most commonly adopted import duty rates. They are much lower than the general rates which apply to non-MFN nations. They apply to the following goods:

  • Goods imported to China from WTO member countries;
  • Goods originating from countries or territories which have concluded bilateral trade agreements containing provisions on MFN treatment with China; and
  • Goods that originated from China.

Conventional duty rates
Conventional duty rates are applied to imported goods that originate from countries or territories that have entered into regional trade agreements containing preferential provisions on duty rates with China. Under the 2013 Tariff Plan:

  • 1,875 imported goods originating from South Korea, India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Lao adopt the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement conventional duty rates.
  • Certain commodities from members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), Chile, Pakistan, New Zealand, Singapore, Peru and Costa Rica are subject to conventional duty rates under the relevant free trade agreements.
  • Some imports from Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan enjoy tariff-free policies.

Special preferential duty rates
Special preferential duty rates are applied to imported goods originating from countries or territories with trade agreements containing special preferential duty provisions with China. They are generally lower than MFN rates and conventional duty rates.

Under the 2013 Tariff Plan, special preferential duty rates are applied to certain goods originating from 40 Least Developed Countries as classified by the United Nations. These countries include Ethiopia, Rwanda and Afghanistan.

General duty rates
General duty rates are applied to imported goods originating from countries or territories that are not covered in any agreements or treaties, or of unknown places of origin.

Tariff rate quota duty rates
Under tariff rate quota (TRQ) schemes, lowered tariff rates are applied to products imported within the quota. For example, according to the 2013 Tariff Plan, the TRQ rate for importing wheat within the quota is 1 percent, substantially lower than the MFN duty rate of 65 percent and the general duty rate of 80 percent.

Temporary duty rates
Occasionally, China sets temporary duty rates for certain imported goods. To boost imports and meet domestic demand in 2013, China implemented temporary tax rates lower than the MFN tariff on more than 780 imported commodities, including seasoning products, pacemakers, special-formula infant milk powder, and resources including kaolin, alfalfa and eiderdown.

Other duty rates
Considerably higher rates may be implemented according to Chinese regulations regarding anti-dumping, anti-subsidies, and safeguard measures. Retaliatory tariffs could also be applied to goods originating from countries or regions that violate trade agreements with China.

Place of Origin
In order to apply the correct tariff rate, it is necessary to first determine the place of origin of the goods. According to China’s place of origin regulations, where goods are completely sourced from one country (or territory), that country will be the place of origin of the goods, e.g. live animals born and bred, plants harvested, and minerals excavated in the country.

Where the goods are produced in two or more countries or territories, the country or territory where the goods undergo a final substantial change and completion is the place of origin of the goods.

The basic standard for determining “substantial change” is a change in tariff classification. Supplementary standards for determining “substantial change” include the ad valorem percentage method, which tests the value added percentage in the manufacturing or processing carried out in the country other than the country of the original materials.

Processing and treatment carried out for purposes of evading anti-dumping, anti-subsidy and safeguard measures will be disregarded. Customs is entitled to request a certificate of origin, i.e. a written document issued by the exporting country or territory stipulating the place of origin of the goods.

Duty Relief
Duty relief includes statutory duty relief, policy-based duty relief (or special tariff relief ), and temporary duty relief. Some items exempt from duties under statutory duty relief are:

  • The duty amount to be paid for one consignment of goods if it is below RMB50.
  • Advertising materials and trade samples of no commercial value.

Some goods are exempt from duties if they are re-exported or re-imported within six months after the import or export, for example:

  • Goods to be exhibited or used at exhibitions, trade fairs, conferences and other similar events.
  • Instruments, equipment and items to be used for scientific research and educational and medical activities.
  • Other goods to be used for non-commercial purposes.

Policy-based duty relief includes:

  • Scientific educational supplies;
  • Special products for the disabled;
  • Poverty alleviation supplies and charity donations;
  • Processing trade products; and
  • Goods traded in free trade zones and export processing zones.

Under special circumstances, the State Council may provide temporary duty relief for certain categories or batches of goods.

Duty Paying Value for Imported Goods
The amount of import taxes and customs duty payable is calculated based on the price or value of the imported goods. This value is called the duty paying value (DPV). DPV is determined based on the transacted price of the goods – i.e. the actual price directly and indirectly paid or payable by the domestic buyer to the foreign seller, with certain required adjustments.

DPV includes transportation-related expenses and insurance premiums on the goods prior to unloading at the place of arrival in China. Import duties and taxes collected by Customs are excluded from DPV.

Calculating Import Taxes and Duties Payable
Import taxes and duties can be calculated after determining the DPV and the tax and tariff rates of the goods. The formulae are:

1. Value-added tax

  • VAT payable = Composite assessable price × VAT rate

Composite assessable price can be calculated as follows:

  • Composite assessable price = DPV + Import duty + CT; or
  • Composite assessable price = (DPV + Import duty)/ (1 – CT rate)

2. Consumption tax

Ad valorem basis:

  • CT Payable = Composite assessable price × CT rate
  • Composite assessable price = (DPV + Import duty)/ (1 – CT rate)

Quantity-based:

  • CT Payable = Quantity of taxable goods × Tax amount per unit

Compound formula:

  • CT payable = Composite assessable price × CT rate +Quantity of taxable goods × Tax amount per unit
  • Composite assessable price = (DPV + Import duty + Quantity of taxable goods × Tax amount per unit) / (1- CT rate)

3. Import duties

Ad valorem basis:

  • Duty payable = DPV × Tariff rate

Quantity-based:

  • Duty payable = Quantity of imported goods × Amount of duty per unit

Compound formula:

  • Duty payable = DPV x Tariff rate + Quantity of imported goods x Amount of duty per unit

Import taxes and duty payable should be calculated in RMB using the benchmark exchange rate published by the People’s Bank of China.

Export Duties
Export duties are only imposed on a few resource products and semi-manufactured goods. In 2013, China continues to levy temporary tariffs on exports including coal, crude oil, chemical fertilizers and iron alloy to conserve resources.

The tax base for export duties are the same as import duties – i.e. the DPV. The DPV for export duties is based on transacted price, i.e. the lump sum price receivable by the domestic seller exporting the goods to the buyer. Export duties, freight-related expenses and insurance fees after loading at the export spot, and commissions borne by the seller are excluded.

Portions of this article came from the March 2013 issue of China Briefing Magazine titled, “Trading with China.” This issue of China Briefing Magazine focuses on the minutiae of trading with China – regardless of whether your business has a presence in the country or not. Of special interest to the global small and medium-sized enterprises, this issue explains in detail the myriad regulations concerning trading with the most populous nation on Earth – plus the inevitable tax, customs and administrative matters that go with this.

Dezan Shira & Associates is a specialist foreign direct investment practice, providing corporate establishment, business advisory, tax advisory and compliance, accounting, payroll, due diligence and financial review services to multinationals investing in emerging Asia. Since its establishment in 1992, the firm has grown into one of Asia’s most versatile full-service consultancies with operational offices across China, Hong Kong, India, Singapore and Vietnam as well as liaison offices in Italy and the United States.

For further details or to contact the firm, please email china@dezshira.com, visit www.dezshira.com, or download the company brochure.

You can stay up to date with the latest business and investment trends across China by subscribing to Asia Briefing’s complimentary update service featuring news, commentary, guides, and multimedia resources.

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192 Responses

  • Mr.Laszlo Varadi says:

    Gentlemen,
    I read your publication about the current Chinese export-import tarriff system with interest.However,I am short in getting answer for my immediate question.Perhaps you could help me,I hope
    Is there any export duty imposed in China for 2013 for the commodity ISRI 27-28-29 used rail products?This is in the category of ferrous metal scrap.
    Your early reply is appreciated.

    Truly Yours,Laszlo Varadi

  • Dear Laszlo; Thank you for your question – I have intructed one of our staff at Dezan Shira & Associates to reply to you directly via your email.
    Best regards – Chris

  • Paola Maffei says:

    Dear Mr. Devonshire,
    we are exporting weekly goods to Shenzhen district, but in last months it happens that a lot of containers have been stopped to Customs since Customs agents request specific declaration on the amount od Insurance Premium. For us it’s extremely difficult to declare this amount for each invoice since we pay a yearly premium.
    Our Insurance compeny prepared a yearly declaration for Chinese Customs but it has been rejected…..
    Moreover in February we increased some prices and Customs rejected our invoices!!! They told us to declare the reason of the increasing!! So, in accordance with customer, we decided to change all the commercial names of the items in order to avoid confusion!

    We are a lit bit confused since we are working all over the world without problems.

    which is the limit of action of the Chinese Customs?
    is it correct they analyze our price policy?

    What should we do in order to avoid troubles?
    Thanks for your cooperation. Best regards. Paola Maffei

  • Fabian Knopf says:

    Dear Paolo, thank you for your comment.

    Let me address the two main points you brought up:

    Insurance declaration
    Customs does not accept annual insurance declarations. However the Customs officer should advise the exporter how to make the declaration, so that this technicality can be resolved easily.

    Adjusting prices
    The exporter has the right adjust the prices of products. Customs does however check and asks for explanation of the adjustment. This is done to understand the reason for the change and to avoid human error.

    I’m sending you a separate email as well with a few more insights on how to move forward in your specific case.

    Best regards,
    Fabian

  • Fernando says:

    Hi Guys,

    I am looking at setting up a repair centre in Guangzhou to repair my hearing aid devices, the idea would be to have all Asia Pacific countries to ship to Guangzhou for repair and then the repair centre to ship back to those countries. Currently I am going through many websites to understand all requirements, duties & VAT so I can complete a cost comparison to our current process, I am looking for as much information as possible and hoping that you can help me out.

    Looking forward to your reply
    Kind Regards
    Fernando

  • @Fernando – my colleague Fabian Knopf from our Guangzhou office will reply to you directly.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • abdul says:

    Hi Guys

    I’m trying to launch a new range of gym equipment for distribution in India.
    I know a dealer in town who has his equipment made in china. I too am trying to break into
    this business and I’m confused as the information regarding taxes and pricing keep changing from person to person that i’ve come across. Can anyone give me information how I should proceed?

  • @Abdul – we have offices in both China and India. I have emailed you personally with details. Kind regards – Chris

  • Mark says:

    I’m looking to ship polyester material from Shenzhen, China to San Juan, Puerto. What would the taxes be from China to ship material?

  • Fabian Knopf says:

    Hi Mark, thank you for your questions.

    As mentioned in the article, export duties are only imposed on a small number of certain goods. In order to confirm the duties on export for polyester, we can check with the Customs Bureau. We will follow-up with you about this in a separate email.

    Best regards,
    Fabian

  • Ijaz Ahmed Sheikh says:

    I plan to import POLISHED PORCELAIN FLOOR TILES from Fushan, China, to Pakistan. Will be grateful to know any export tax / FTA or some other tax and the rate of tax applicable to this item. Thanks.

  • Brian Harker says:

    Hello,
    We are having our supplier in India, ship an individual component to our supplier in China, who assembles the entire product using this Indian component, packages and ships the finished assembly to our company in the U.S.
    How do we avoid having our Chinese supplier pay a lot of duties and taxes on the component from India, when they are turning right around and exporting the component as part of the total assembly?

    Thank you.

  • Adam says:

    Hello,

    I am an Australian boat builder who is looking to get our boats built in China and then shipped back to Australia to sell. My question is what amount of Import tax and duty do I have to pay if I buy and ship the aluminium material from Singapore to the boat building yard in China ? Do I get any refund when the boat produced from this material is shipped from China back to Australia ? Looking foward to your thoughts, Adam.

  • Dear Adam;
    Thanks for your question. The duty payable in China on imported aluminium into China could be zero if the boat building yard is located in a export processing or bonded zone. In this way they can be shipped to China, worked on but as the product is not intended for the Chinese domestic market they do not ‘officially” enter China. So you need to find a boatyard located in such a site. Otherwise duty will be payable, and as the product is not meant for the China market this just adds an unnecessary – and avoidable – element to the end cost. Let me know if you need assistance with site location, we have clients in the boat building industry in China. – Chris

  • Brian says:

    Hello,

    We are a boat building company based in Indonesia. We plan to export a newly built 32 meter luxury yacht into Hainan, China. We will cruiser her straight from Jakarta into Hainan. What sort of taxes will my customer come across with the importation of this yacht? Just keeping a heads up for my client.

    Kind Regards,

    Brian

  • @Brian – thanks for your enquiry – I have responded to you directly via email. – Chris

  • Astrid Mejia says:

    Hi! Good day.
    I need to know the import duty for canned tuna coming from El Salvador to China.
    HS code: 160414

    Also, where can I see a complete list of import duties by HS code?
    Thanks in advance.

    Astrid.

  • @Astrid – There is a search function on the official website of China Customs and Import duties of various goods abd their respective HS codes that can be found here:
    http://www.customs.gov.cn/publish/portal0/tab9409/

    For canned tuna, the lowest tax rate is 5 percent, the normal rate is 90 percent, and the value-added tax is 17 percent.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Haluk Kaban says:

    Hello
    I would like to buy aluminium ingots from China, then transport to Turkey
    Is there a export tax for aluminium ingots?
    Thanks for your help
    Haluk

  • @Haluk: There are four different kinds of aluminum ingots listed under the China Custom’s Online Service Center. The site is in Chinese but does have a search function. It’s here: http://service.customs.gov.cn/default.aspx?tabid=9409

    Anyway, exporting aluminum ingots from China is subject to both export duty and value-added tax. The tax rate of VAT is always 17%, while the export duty rate is 15% for such resources.
    Best regards – Chris

  • Mr. Mosely says:

    Good day to you all,

    i was trying to use link (http://www.customs.gov.cn/publish/portal0/tab9409/) for seaching HS codes by myself but i was not succesful. That page did not let me trough its verification code. So i decided to ask here and i would be grateful for any reply to my email.

    My company is starting business with importing goods to Europe from China. I have a regular discussion about export duties with my china suppliers. I would like to have some sort of credible source which would give me straight and clear information about real export duties which my china supplier is facing. Is there some credible government source like this in english language?

    We are importing to EU mainly HS8443999090 and HS4811900000, HS3703900000. Can i ask about real export duties with these goods? Im especially interested if i had to pay 17% China VAT when im exporting these goods from China to Europe.

    Thank you very much again for any reply to my mail.

  • C says:

    I have some issues with my commercialization strategy, your article was really useful but I wonder if there is any chance to email you with some doubts. I am planning on exporting menswear to china,
    thanks

  • @C – I have sent you an email directly. Best regards – Chris

  • @Mr. Mosely;

    I think the problem you are facing on that website is that you are putting the “HS” in front of the code, which doesn’t work. You just have to put the numerical code in directly. However, yes it is only in Chinese and can be a bit confusing.
    But I did research on the typical rates for the goods you mentioned and these are listed below:
    HS8443999090 – 0% export duty, 17% VAT but could be subject to 15% export VAT refund
    HS4811900000 – 0% export duty, 17% VAT, 0% VAT refund
    HS3703900000 – Code “Does not Exist”
    Hope that helps
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Herbie Riera says:

    Our China site has been importing goods from different countries. We had encountered an issue where in the China Customs is taxing us base on a higher value. We bought the goods from Singapore for like .05/unit. China customs is taxing us base on 0.162/unit. They do not accept that the real price for the item is just 0.05/unit.

    What should we do?

  • Nathan says:

    Hello,
    I am administrating an international school in mainland china, and I want to order some textbooks from America. The American textbook publisher requires me to provide my customs registration number before I can complete the order, but I’m finding it very difficult to find out how to get such a number.
    Can you provide me any information on shipping textbooks into mainland china, and/or information about the customs registration number?
    Thanks!

  • @Herbie: You need to provide proof to China customs that the goods were purchased at the amount you said. However they do keep a database of prices on gloablly traded products to ensure the correct amount is being declared, and they can and do impose what they feel is the correct dutiable value on the goods if they wish. You need to negotiate with them and provide hard evidence of proof of the true cost. – Chris

  • @Nathan: Bringing in school textbooks from overseas can be very difficult as the Chinese government monitor very carefully the publications that can be brought in. It’s not just a matter of customs, it’s also a matter for several other Government departments as well, including the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Propaganda. You will need professional assitance with this. I have sent you a personal email to discuss. – Chris

  • KG says:

    Dear Mr Devonshire,

    Apologies if you have already answered this question before.
    Can you let me know if there is a website where I can check the import duty rate of importing goods from HK into China?

    Thanks and kind regards

    Kian

  • @Kian – this China Ministry of Customs website lists all the applicable duties on HS codes for goods imported into China: http://www.customs.gov.cn/publish/portal0/tab9409/
    It’s in Chinese, but just type in the HS code (only the number) and it’ll search and provide details. – Best regards – Chris

  • John Scott says:

    If a local Chinese living in PRC purchases Gold or Silver in either bars or coins from the UK but wants them sending to him/her from the UK to PRC, then are these items subject to any tax.?
    Many thanks
    John

  • Van Nguyen says:

    Hi,
    Could you please help me check what are the HS codes of quartz-based engineered/artificial/man-made stone and natural stone (marble/granite) exported to China? Is it 68101100 or 68101910 or any number else?
    Thank you in advance.

    Cheers,
    Van
    From Vietnam

  • @John Scott: According to China’s customs regulations, gold, silver and the products made from them are duty-free and do not need to be declared if they are less than 50g (2 ounce) in weight. If the amount exceeds the limitation, you should declare it, and duty will be payable. On another note, I wouldn’t be sending gold or valuables through the post or even courier to China. It would be far safer to collect in UK and bring it back in personal luggage.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • @Van Nguyen:
    Artificial stone- HS code:6810191000
    Lowest tax rate: 10.5%
    Normal tax rate: 70%
    Value-added tax rate: 17%

    Natural stone- HS code:6801000000
    Lowest tax rate: 12%
    Normal tax rate: 70%
    Value-added tax rate: 17%

    Best regards – Chris

  • O.A. Al Kabeli says:

    Hi,

    I would like to know ,Is it possible to buy a new made in China car and send it to my country(Saudi Arabia)?
    Is there any tax exemptions in my case as it`s for personal use only?
    can I buy a car from the manufacturer directly,because I want to add my personal needs` and modifications in the car?
    can you kindly supply me with the names and address of the best chines cars manufacturers? and the tax rules and regulations in China.
    thanks for your kind cooperation..
    Your`s
    O.A. Kabeli

  • @O.A. Al Kabeli: You will be able to claim back the VAT upon export of the vehicle.
    As for Saudi import duties, you’ll need to talk to a good tax agent there.
    Modifications and so on you’re best talking to the manufacturer directly, and there are so many – you’ll need to conduct your own online research on that as I have no idea what specification or type of vehicle you want.
    Best regards – Chris

  • virgil gerard t. saldajeno says:

    Good Afternoon Mr Chris Devonshire-Ellis!!

    I intend to import to the Philippines some stuffed toys (animals – dog, cats, etc.) coming off from a plant in China. My supplier intends to impose their local taxes on top of my acquisition cost. We are willing to accept this term. My question is: how would I know if proper taxes were really levied on the goods? I would like to know how it is calculated and their Tariff rates for such. Reason here is I would like to be fair and have a check & balance protocol for this “at-my-cost” field. Thank you!!

    warmest regards,

    Mr Saldajeno

  • @Virgil: Tariff rates for all kinds of goods can be found here:

    http://www.customs.gov.cn/publish/portal0/tab9409/

    Stuffed toys- HS code: 9503002100
    Lowest tax rate: 0%
    Normal tax rate: 80%
    Value added tax rate: 17%

    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Deyan says:

    Dear Mr Chris Devonshire-Ellis,

    Our company is supplying business partners in China with special metal goods of purpose for car industry produced and developed in EU. Just recently custom in a way blocked one of last shipment and making complete due diligance of supplier and importer and finialy asking for paying of waranty fee, extra duty tax.
    Would you be so kind and reply on my e-mail with with your suguestions and anwsers why this happen and how to resolve it?
    Thank you in advanced for your reply.

  • @Deyuan – email sent.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Rob Read says:

    I propose exporting rooibos tea(indigenous to South Africa) to China.As part of the BRICS’s trading block what are the import and or customs duties from South Africa to China?

  • Bryan Horridge says:

    We are looking to ship boats to China for sale in China. Let’s say the cost is $15,000 U.S dollars. What would be the taxes on this?
    What if we decided to make the boats in China and use the materials available?
    Thanks for your assistance.
    Much Appreciated,
    Bryan Horridge

  • @Rob Read: There are over seven kinds of HS codes for tea in China, however, none of them are specifically for the ‘Rooibos tea’ you enquired about. Overall, tariff duties for various kinds of tea are the same in the country. Specifically:
    Lowest tax rate: 15%
    Normal tax rate: 100%
    Value added-tax rate: 13%

    @Bryan Horridge: In China, tariff duties for a boat vary a lot depending on the size, engine and intended purpose of each boat. We need more information on the boats you intend to manufacture so we can provide detailed tax rates. You can email to tax@dezshira.com to get in touch. We’d also need to know the place of manufacture in China.
    If you decide to make the boats in China and use the available materials in the country, the purchase of such materials and the sale of the finished boat is subject to value-added tax and consumption tax.

    Best regards Guys – Chris

  • Michael says:

    Dear Chris,

    We are planning on making large quantities of copper imports from US to China. Much of the material may be raw, unprocessed scrap metal. What would be the tariffs I am looking at?

    Thank you for your time!

    Best,
    Michael

  • @Michael:
    Copper – HS code: 2603000090
    Lowest tax rate: 0%
    Normal tax rate: 0%
    Value-added tax rate: 17%
    Best regards – Chris

  • neil says:

    we are planning to import small amounts of DAP fertilizer and urea into Australia, what would we have to expect to pay in tarriffs for this?

  • Josephine says:

    I am ordering 400 Christmas Stockings from China, and have no experience with importing from China. How do I figure what the tax would be?

  • Josephine says:

    I failed to mention that I will be importing to the United States.

  • @Josephine: You’ll be helping make a lot of small children very happy on Christmas Day.
    There’s no tax due when you buy product from China, just the purchase amount and the shipping costs which your supplier should be able to advise. However you may face import (customs) duties in the US.

    There is an international system in place so that customs officials across each country and around the world can understand each other in relation to specific products. It is called the “Harmonized Tariff Schedule” (commonly referred to as the HS Code) and means nearly all products have a specific code number. If you know that number you can refer to the import duty as applicable in any country.

    The US Harmonized Tariff Schedule is online here: http://hts.usitc.gov/
    If you look up Christmas Stockings (probably under decorative stockings) that’ll give you the HS Code and you can find the import duty applicable in the United States.

    That will tell you how much the total cost of these items is including purchase, shipping and US import taxes, and from there you can work out how much you need to add to that (marketing, transportation, packaging and your profit) to make this a viable business proposition.
    Good luck with that (and an early Merry Christmas) – Chris

  • Miss T says:

    Your column is very insightful, thank you for writing it.

    My company imports from China. What are the tax rates, and how do we get VAT back? From where do I get the information about logistic, foe example what roots are the shortest how much the prices are, what are my benefits from importing from China etc..

    Thank you.

  • @Miss T: You can only claim back VAT in China if you have a legal presence there. However, your supplier should be deducting part of this from your invoices as they can claim VAT back when they export to you. If they are charging you the full 17% VAT then that is a mark up on your invoice that should be questioned.
    In terms of logistics, you need to talk to a shipping company, and I suggest you google for that.
    Best regards – Chris

  • Em says:

    Hi,
    We are exporting boats (luxury yachts) from China to HongKong, Europe and USA. We are looking for the exact types of certifications we need as it seems it is different if the boat is shipped by cargo or sailed on her own bottom.
    It is hard to find regulation about the certifications (CE, Module B, Module F, CCS…) needed in each case. I know it is not the exact subject of the article but maybe you can help.
    BR

  • @Em: When exporting boats from China to other countries, the enterprises need to apply with the Chinese customs and submit all the required materials, including the application form, information of the ship and names of the crew. If such application has been approved, the customs will issue a certificate that allows the boat to exit the Chinese port. In terms of the type of the certification, it depends on the imported country of the boat. For example, CE certification is required for all recreational boats entering or sold in the European Union, while CCS certification may be required for importing boats to China.

    This is quite a complicated procedural process. If you need assistance please contact one of our China offices for professional assistance with customs: china@dezshira.com

    Best regards – Chris

  • Trust Mbabvu says:

    my company wants to export rail scrap from south africa to china. what kind of taxes and duty are applicable

  • @Trust – The common import rate of rail scrap is 8%. Minimum rate is 0% if there are relevant treaties applied. The VAT rate is 17%.

    Best wishes – Chris

  • James says:

    Hi,

    I’m looking for some information on import duties if anyone is happy to help :)

    I will be exporting watches from Hong Kong and importing to China does anyone know what duties i would need to pay?

    Also what would be the case if they were pre-owned watches not new products

  • @James – There are six kinds of HS codes for watches in China, and tariff duties vary a lot depending on the materials and brands of the watches. Specifically:
    Lowest tax rate: 11% – 23%
    Normal tax rate: 80% – 100%
    Value-added tax rate: 17%
    Consumption tax rate: 20%

    As China and Hong Kong have signed a series of CEPA deals, watches recognized by Chinese government as “Hong Kong’s Own Brand” can enjoy zero import tariff treatment when exporting to China. A full list of Hong Kong’s own watch brands can be found here:
    http://kan.weibo.com/con/3490138517625643
    As at now, pre-owned watches are not allowed to be exported to China.

    For your information, Chinese brands such as Seagull http://www.seagullwatches.com and the French-Chinese brand The Chinese Timekeeper http://www.thechinesetimekeeper.com are gaining more in desirability because they are making some very fine watches and are Chinese in origin.
    Best wishes – Chris

  • i am looking some information.i am from Bangladesh.If i import Ready made Garments (RMG) from Bangladesh what is the tax rate or tariff duties?can someone let me know?

  • Nuno says:

    Hi,
    I’m a student and actually i’m doing my master work about China market for a company.
    Currently I am going through many websites to understand all requirements, duties & VAT so I can complete a cost comparison to
    current process, I am looking for as much information as possible and hoping that you can help me out.
    Looking forward to your reply
    Kind Regards
    Nuno

  • @Solaiman Siddique: There is some variation about the exact HS code for these products as RMGs made by different materials vary a little within their normal rate. Generally, the minimum tariff rate is 16%, and normal rate ranges from 9% to 13%. They are also subject to 17% VAT.

    @Nuno: I will send you a back issue of China Briefing magazine on the subject, also please use our ‘search’ function on this website at the top of the page, Just type in “VAT” and it’ll provide you with all our articles on the subject.

    Hope that helps guys – Chris

  • We have been offered a MGO manufacturing plant in Nanjing in an ordinary manufacturing zone, not an export zone that I am told holds an export licence, Need advice we wish to purchase PC items out of China doors windows and produce our own MGO board in china for our own use back in Australia for housing construction, First is the export licence an advantage?
    Do we need to been in a tax free zone, and I am told there are many empty factories available
    that can be obtained thru Government to help with employment, Do we have to have Chinese partners to set up in China.

  • @Alfred – my colleague Richard Cant in the Shanghai office of Dezan Shira & Associates will contact you directly via email concerning this issue. – Chris

  • Mr. G. says:

    Sir or madam,
    What is the China Customs duty rate for the importation by individuals (entering at the airport with said items in possession not intended for sale) for gold and silver coins and bullion that exceed 50 grams. And, how is the dutiable value determined on the coins, by their face value or weight??
    Thank you very much.
    Mr. G.

  • @Mr. G: Gold and silver coins and bullion that exceed 50 grams in weight being brought into China are required to go through custom declaration. Chinese customs will determine how many quantities of gold and silver exceed their “reasonable range for self-use” based on relevant criteria. For excess self-use they items may be subject to import duties at 10% on their recent market value.
    Best wishes – Chris

  • jorge says:

    dear sir/madam,
    i have been exporting many goods to different countries from china
    recently some of my competitors have tried to contact my custom agent in china and tried to get the information of the invoices i submit for custom clearance of my goods

    i need to know if custom agent can freely provide this information to any third party for my goods?
    if yes then can i take legal action for this??

    moreover can i take legal action against the competitor for this action?

    awaiting for valuable advise

  • @Jorge – No, your customs agent should NOT be divulging this information to your competitors. But that doesn’t mean that he isn’t. If you think he is leaking this data then I suggest changing your customs agent. It would be difficult to bring a legal case in this instance, although I agree it is wrong it would be a very hard case to prove. – Best regards – Chris

  • Titus says:

    Hello I am looking at exporting plastic decking material to Hong Kong from England. Please advise the necessary taxes I have to allow for. Can you please confirm ASAP. Thank you

  • @Titus: Hong Kong is a free port and does not impose any customs tariff on imports and exports except for four types of dutiable commodities: liquor, tobacco, hydrocarbon oil, and methyl alcohol. So you have no customs duties to pay when shipping the items described to HK.
    Best regards – Chris

  • Yuni says:

    Hi, I just want to know, is it possible for us to expor product (from China to Indonesia) whereas we don’t have registration number for this product?

    Thank you, Yuni

  • Bill Carter says:

    Good afternoon

    We are looking to export Centrifugal fans to China and are keen to know how duties and taxes would be calculated and if there is a different rate if the fans are assembled or shipped as components.

    Kind Regards

    Bill

  • @Yuni – You need to find out the HS code for the product. This is an internationally recognized code that customs officials worldwide use to identify specific products. If you don’t have this you will be unable to export it from China or import it into Indonesia as no-one will be able to identify what it is. So you need to find this out. I suggest you visit http://www.hscode.org to help identify the relevant number.

    @Bill – The common rate and minimum rate for import duty of Centrifugal fans are 30 percent and 8 percent respectively, and 50 percent and 0 percent for fans with power less than 125w. Tax rate is usually lower for importing components and then assembling in China. However, the customs of China will assess the value of the components, and if the total price of the components accounted for more than 60 percent of the price for a complete equipment, tax rate for complete equipment will be applied.

    Best regards – Chris

  • said mansoor says:

    Dear Mr Devonshire,
    Apologies if you have already answered this question before. Can you let me know if there is a
    export tax for copper rod 8 mm size from china to Dubai, is it come under rare earth metal

    waiting for your valuable advice

    thanks and regards
    said

  • sam says:

    Hello I am looking at exporting computer hard disk drive to india from
    china. Please advise the necessary taxes I
    have to allow for?

  • @Said Mansoor – The copper rod is under the “copper bars, rods and profiles” section and the export tax rate from China is 0% (zero). – Chris

  • @Sam – Well that’s really an India import tax question. But we can answer that we have offices in India. On the hard disks imported into India, Basic Customs Duty is zero. However, a Counter-Vailing duty @ 6% and Central excise and customs education cess are imposed @ 3%, each. Further there is Special duty imposed @ 4%.
    Best regards – Chris

  • Stephen W says:

    We are interested to export Aluminum scrap wheels from China to the USA.
    Would you kindly advise what export taxes or other costs may be involved if any?

    Thank you – best regards, Stephen

  • David says:

    Dear Chris,

    I’m working on a cost simulation for selling Lithium Carbonate ( it seems that HS 28369100 covers both technical/industrial grade and battery grade) to countries in the Asia Pacific block and eventually Europe. As far as what I’ve learned from your different answers, exporters would get the VAT back on one side and the Chinese company wouldn’t pay duties if it reimports a purified product within 6 months assuming the company exports a product concentrate to Vietnam (for instance) where it gets purified (No HS# change though).
    All that said, what are the regular export duties for Lithium Carbonate ? If exceeding the 6 months to re import, what would be the import duties then?

    Many thanks in advance and great learning from all your wise comments.

    Sincerely,
    David.

  • @Stephen W –
    Aluminum Waste or Scrap
    HS code – 7602000090
    Export Tax Rate – 15%
    Best regards – Chris

  • @David: The HS Code 2836910000 covers all types of lithium carbonate, and the export rate from China is 0%.

    If the lithium carbonate failed to be re-imported within six months, you can apply for extension with relevant customs and such period can be extended for another three months upon approval. However, if the lithium carbonate failed to be re-imported within nine months after being exported, the regular import duties shall apply.
    Import duties for lithium carbonate are:
    The lowest tax rate – 2%
    The normal tax rate – 30%

    Best wishes – Chris

  • Marc LaCourse says:

    We are a rope manufacturer in the US. We are exporting some cordage to a manufacturer in Qingdao China that will add them to sport bags they are making for us. They will ship the finished product back to us in the States. Will there be taxes and duties placed on this item in China ? Should I place any special wording on the commercial invoice to eliminate taxes since this will be used for manufacturing and shipped back to us. Thanks

  • SHARIM SALLEH says:

    hi , I have export out good frequently to china, and every time I stuck with china custom, due to import licence in china, how should we go about applying for this licence, and as for custom duty is there any bench mark or how percent charge ??

  • @Mark: You shouldn’t face any export duties on these items – but it’s best to check that the manufacturer won’t add on any unnecessary surcharges. Let us know if you need assistance with this.

    @Sharim: You can get an Import-Export license by setting up your own Trading Company in China. Our China Briefing magazine issue “Trading With China” details this and can be downloaded here: http://www.asiabriefing.com/store/book/trading-with-china-398
    Again, if you need assistance with the setup procedures let us know. In terms of duties, they vary from product to product but the same rate should always apply for each specific item unless regulatory changes occur to adjust this.

    Best wishes – Chris

  • Peter grampola says:

    Hi Chris,
    I am curious about the taxes and duties I would have to pay if say I purchased tobacco products, more specifically, 100 Cuban cigars, from Hong Kong to China mainland (Shandong province). I am having a difficult time attempting to figure this out (new to the system).
    Thank you, very much appreciated.

  • Art Collector says:

    Dear Chris,

    You have a wonderful resource here with Asia Briefing and I’m a regular reader of the magazine and newsletter. My situation is I live in Shanghai and am interested in having 8 oil paintings shipped to me from a friend in the States. Will there be any trouble with customs, and if so how do I go about taking care of this ahead of time and avoiding any hassle? How would any import duty rate be implemented on something like artwork where prices are largely speculative?

    Separate question – these will be for my personal collection, but if I want to sell one or two off in the city down the road what will my tax liabilities be?

    Thanks from a fellow aficionado of the arts

  • @Art Collector: Personal articles will be considered as import and subject to import duty when the value of a single article exceeds 1000 RMB and has been determined by the customs as “not for personal use”. Once the paintings are considered imported goods, the import duty = duty paying value * import duty rate. The import duty rate is temporarily reduced to 6% for oil paintings since 2012, and the duty paying value of the paintings will be determined by either the price on the invoice or the recent market price of similar goods from the same source, whichever is applicable.

    Incomes from selling the paintings will be subject to individual income tax (IIT). The IIT rate is usually 20%. 3% IIT rate will be applied if the original value of the painting is unable to be determined. If the sales are conducted by an enterprise, the incomes will be subject to corporate income tax instead, with the tax rate of 25%.

    Value-added tax will be imposed at 4% on the auction company if applies. The consignor is not subject to any VAT.

    I never import such items into China anymore, even for personal use as sometimes things have just gone missing. I’d certainly never rely on China Post, who have a 50% failure rate of delivery whenever I’ve had things sent in from overseas. I’d encourage you to ship to Hong Kong and then hand carry in.

    Hope that helps – Chris

  • Adeleh says:

    Hi!

    Please let me know:
    1- what is the export VAT rate for Mobile SD Card HS Code: 85235100 and Roots Blower HS Code: 8414599010 ???
    2- Does this export VAT rate differ from city to city in China?
    3- Can we get back this VAT after export?? if so, how?
    4- How much of the paid VAT will be paid back to us for above items?

    Thanks a lot!

  • @Adeleh: The VAT rate for both SD cards and Roots Blowers are 17%, and the rate is the same for the same products in all cities of China. The VAT is included in the price you paid to the suppliers. After the export, you could file export refund at local tax bureau. Currently, the VAT rebate rate for both of these products are also 17%, so all of the VAT paid will be paid back. The process will take months though.

    Best wishes – Chris

  • Adeleh says:

    Dear Chris,

    Many thanks for your reply.

    I have to say that roots blower is not manufactured in China. It is going to be imported from France to China and then to be re-export from China. Please confirm if 17% VAT rat and 17% VAT refund rate is still applicable or not??

    Thank you again!
    Adeleh

  • Ian Mitchell says:

    Hi there,

    Could I ask if I export brass parts made in Australia to China for processing and then shipped back to Australia, I understand that there will be duties and VAT etc that is unavoidable on the import transaction into China, however as I am not actually selling anything to China, can I declare a nominal value – for example 5000 parts would in reality cost say $20,000 – can I declare $1 per part – so just $5000. No actual payment is made for the parts – the only transaction is a payment from Australia to China for the reprocessing and return shipping. Thanks in advance.

  • @Ian: This type of processing service is characterized as “processing with supplied material” (PSM) by the Custom and the Tax bureau. Under PSM, no tariff, VAT, or consumption tax will be imposed as long as the quantity of the parts imported match the export quantity of the processed parts. The relevant information of the parts will be put into a manual issued by the Custom when the parts coming into the country. Also the processing company in China must have the qualification approved by relevant government authorities to conduct PSM.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Faye C says:

    Hi! We are purchasing plastic packaging from a factory in Shenzen. This packaging will then be shipped to a factory in Taishan. This Taishan factory manufactures the product and will load the product into the packaging. This is all being done and paid for by a US based company. The packaged products will then be exported to the US. Should we be paying VAT taxes on the packaging from the Shenzen factory to them? Or would the Taishan factory who is doing the final packout and shipping bill us for the entire VAT tax total?

  • Pierre Shepherd says:

    Thanks for all the information on this page. I’m trying to find out what regime applies to Chinese export of rolled aluminium. Is there a rebate, and if so does it apply to both the export tax and VAT, or just VAT. I am trying to work out the price of exported aluminium from China, if you have any information on internal pricing within China or links to where I can find that information that would be excellent.

  • @Faye C: The Taishan factory will pay VAT for purchasing the packaging, and this amount of VAT is included in the price of the packaging paid to the Shenzhen factory. For example, if the original price of the packaging is 100, then the final price that Taishan factory will pay for will be 117 (100 plus 17% VAT). If the buyer of the packaged products produced by the Taishan factory is a company in China, then this amount of VAT can be passed to this buyer (again included in the selling price, which will be 117 plus 17% VAT = 136.89).

    Therefore, yes, usually the final consumer will bear the entire VAT generated from all value chain. However, when the Taishan factory export the products to the U.S., it can apply for VAT rebate after the export. The VAT rebate rate depends on the product and varies from 5% to 17%. Usually, the foreign buyer could bargain the price with the exporter to cut the part of VAT that the exporter could get back later from VAT rebate.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • @Pierre Shepherd: Only the VAT can be refunded. There is no rebate for export duty. The export rate for rolled aluminum varies from 0% to 15% depends on the application of different HS code. The internal pricing model varies for different company. Generally, the price would include all the costs (material, labor, transportation, etc. ), and export companies usually want to put the cost of VAT in the price as well even if they could get the amount back after the export through VAT rebate. All in all, the final price depends on the bargain and negotiation with the sales person of the export company.
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Mike says:

    Your website is very helpful and I thought I would trouble you with a question since you all have been so willing. We are importing engines to China from the United States in order to attach them to lawn machinery that will then be immediately exported to the United States. In other words, the engines are only in China long enough to be assembled into a machine and then exported back to their country of origin. Will the engines be taxed by the Chinese government on either end of this transaction? I greatly appreciate it if you could point me in the right direction.

  • @Mike – It depends upon where the assembly is taking place. Ideally this should be based in a free trade or other bonded zone – the engines are imported into the zone (but not into the mainland as they do not pass through customs). Then they can be re-exported as a finished item with the lawn machinery. VAT can also be claimed back upon export on the Chinese sourced component as well.
    If the assembly is taking place after the engines are imported into China then this is inefficient – you are paying import duty on the engines and then have to wait to complete the assembly to claim that – and any VAT – back.
    Hope that helps. Email us if you need further assistance: china@dezshira.com
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Ester says:

    Hi…
    I purchase many ceramic vase decoration from Jingdezhen. total is FCL 20 feet.
    Will try to send from Jiujiang,Jianxi Port.
    I want to send it to Indonesia port in Medan.
    But I confius with the shipping cost from China to Indonesia,
    because every agent I ask give different cost to be paid.
    I want to ask what include in the shipping cost from China port to Indonesia Port.

    Best Regards,
    Ester

  • @Ester – well shipping is a competitive business so you are getting competing quotes. However I’d recommend using a broker that is well known and reliable, and suggest doing some homework on who they are and their reputation when choosing which one to use.
    Best regards – Chris

  • Debra Crawford says:

    Hello

    I would like know about the import taxs on importing used books for six school libraries. The used can be bought bought for $200 for about 800 books

    Thank you
    Debra

  • @Debra: Importation of educational material in China isn’t just a matter of import duties, its also a matter of having them approved by the Ministry of Education. China also has a monopoly on all imported books, magazines and so on and this is a very difficult area to make any headway. Publishing and selling books to China is not a viable business, take my word on this.
    Best wishes – Chris

  • Barry Eadie says:

    We are looking to export scrap copper millberry from China to Australia can you advise all tax and duty we will encounter in China. Thanks. Barry Eadie.

  • @Barry: For export of scrap copper millberry from China to Australia, the following taxes and duties shall apply:
    Export tax rate: 11%
    Value-added tax rate: 17%
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Doug B. says:

    We are looking to import slate into china for use in producing product which will be exported to North America. What is tax and duty on slate from India to China

  • @Doug: Depending on the material of the slate (e.g. marble, granite) and the process procedure (e.g. polished, unpolished), the common import rate ranges from 70 percent to 90 percent. If the tax treaty applies between India and China, the minimum import rate could apply, which ranges from 0 percent to 10.5 percent. Import VAT rate is 17%.
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • manolis says:

    hi. i dont know if im out if toppic , i wish you help me.
    i want to report a china seller for cheating taxes. i pay 435$ he write in receipt i pay 100$. a link for china taxes reports? thank you

  • Gary North says:

    We’d like to get hospital linen and gowns made in China for us to sell in Australia.
    We must provide our specialised woven polyester textiles to the clothing maker so need to know what rate of import duty would be payable in China on this type of textile.
    Thanks,
    Gary

  • @Manolis: To report tax fraud in China, you could call (86) 10 6354 3714, being the report line of China’s State Administration of Taxation (SAT). You could also write a letter to them at the following address:

    China’s State Administration of Taxation
    Tax Fraud Department
    68 Zao Lin Qian Street,
    Xuan Wu District,
    Beijing,
    100053
    China

    To make an online tip-off, you need to register on the SAT website by providing your legitimate personal information, then report the details. Here is the link to make an online report: http://hd.chinatax.gov.cn/jzxx/jicha.jsp#

    Best regards;
    Chris

  • @Gary North: In terms of the woven polyester textiles, the common import rate is 130 percent, but the minimum import rate to China could be 10 percent with relevant tax treaties. VAT rate is 17 percent.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • N.A.NOORULAKHAN says:

    I WANT EXPORT FELDSPAR POWDER FROM INDIA TO CHINA , WHAT IS PROCEDURE FOR THIS WHAT COULD BE THE TAX STRECTURE , DUTY
    PLEASE REPLY ME AND HELP ME TO KNOW THE PROCEDURE – NOOR

  • FARZANEH says:

    HELLO

    FOR EXPORTING IRONSTONE FROM IRAN TO CHINA WOULD YOU PLEASE TELL ME THE TAX AND DUTIES?

    BEST REGARDS

  • Dear sir/Madam,
    I am going to send 30 kg pashmina(Scalfs) to Beijing from Nepal. So i want to know about duty tax of Beijing for pashmina . Please could you tell me about this ? how much percents tax i have to pay in total invoice value ?

  • We are planning to export of papers and paper board from China to third countries. Please let us know the rate of Import duty and other taxes in china.

    The paper h.s. Code No.48181000

    Ram Mittal
    Super Multicolor printers Pvt Limited
    Chandigarh-India
    Mobile: +91-8528423278

  • @N.A.NOORULAKHAN
    The common import rate for feldspar powder is 50 percent. Minimum import rate of 3 percent could apply if there is a relevant tax treaty between India and China. The VAT rate is 17 percent.

    @FARZANEH
    The import rate for ironstone is 0 percent, and the VAT rate is 17 percent.

    @Nabaraj Pandey
    The common import rate for pashmina is 130 percent which could be reduced to 14-16 percent (minimum import rate) if tax treaties exist. The VAT rate is 17 percent.

    @Ram Kumar Mittal
    The export rate for the paper board (HS Code No.48181000) is actually 0 percent. By the way, thank you for providing the HS Code which makes our job easier and more accurate when answering these questions.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • […] on March 11, 2013 by China […]

  • Raf says:

    I want to export device from europe for mould trial to china, after trials this device will be sent back to Europe, How looks taxes with temporary export

  • Dee says:

    Can you kindly advice what procedures I have to do to apply for tax exemptions? Recently purchased a LCD monitor from China and it arrived faulty. Seller informed to send it back but I have checked and the cost to send it back plus the duties and taxes already outweighs the cost of the item. Is there a term that returned goods can be exempted? I only received the item about a week ago. Any documents I can provide to help? The third party courier did not hand me any invoice from the seller in the first place.

  • @Raf – You could declare the device as a temporarily imported good to the Chinese Customs and obtain an ATA (Admission Temporaire/Temporary Admission) carnet. In order to be granted ATA, certain amounts of deposit or other types of guarantee will be required by the customs. In addition, to be qualified for temporarily imported goods, the goods should be exported generally within 6 months, any extension will need approval from the customs. The import and export duty and VAT are exempted for temporarily imported goods.

    @Dee
    I don’t think there will be any taxes imposed on the LCD monitor as long as the customs are convinced this product is for personal use instead of sales purpose.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Joanne says:

    We are purchasing fashion jewellery items from suppliers in Qingdao, China. The jewellery will contain components that have been imported to China from Austria and the price of these components includes 17% VAT. When the supplier exports the jewellery can they claim back any of the VAT on the components used? If yes what % can they claim back?

  • @Joanne: The suppliers could claim VAT refund for the jewelry items. Depending on the material of the jewelry, the VAT refund rate generally ranges from 0 percent to 13 percent.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Tina says:

    Hi Chris,

    We are a company based in Boston, MA. We ordered crude oil lab analysis from Shanghai, China. The invoice we received contains VAT tax. Do we have to pay VAT taxe in this case? We are no a Chinese company, and we are not importing/exporting goods. If our activity can be classified as anything it would be more along the lines of services exporting.

    Thanks,
    Tina

  • Hamish says:

    Hi, great article.

    We’re looking at importing dried fruit from Australia into Shanghai…what specific export/import taxes are applicable?

    Many thanks!

  • @Tina: Generally speaking, Chinese companies providing consulting or authentication services to foreign companies should be VAT exempted unless the subject matter (the products or goods) for which the services are provided for are located or produced in China.

    @Hamish: The normal import rate for importing dried fruit into China is 70 percent, but it could be reduced to 25 percent if there are tax treaties applied between Australia and China. The import VAT is 13 percent.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Joanne says:

    Thank you Chris, can they claim the refund on totoal cost of the item or just the component? How do i find a list of the materials and their % refund rate?

  • @Joanne: In China, enterprises have to satisfy the following criteria to claim VAT back:
    The enterprise has obtained the ‘export rebate’ qualification from the tax authority; and
    The enterprise has valid certificates to prove it has paid the value-added tax.

    In your case, the supplier can claim the VAT back based on the valid tax certificates (for components) they should have. The refund rates are not available online, they will need to check with the customs for detailed information.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • tina says:

    Hi Chris,

    This is Tina (I have already asked you a question on Nov 21), after that I asked the lab in China to remove the VAT from our invoice.

    But they referred me to this
    http://www.chinatax.gov.cn/n2925/n2957/c418252/content.html

    I do not understand everything there. Any advice?

    Thank you,
    Tina

  • jonas says:

    Hi!
    Me and a freind want to import candy from Sweden to sell in China. What custom or tax fees could we expect?

    Thanks for good article

  • M.D.Mehta says:

    I would like to know tax refund rate for exports from China HS Code-wise, primarily for Chapters 48,72,73,74,75,76,84,85 & 90 of BTN.Thanks.

  • @Tina: If the subject matter (the products or goods) which the services is conducted on is located or produced in China, you are subject to VAT.
    For more information, please contact china@dezshira.com.

    @Jonas: The normal rate for import candy is 50 percent. The minimum rate of 10 percent could apply if you enact the relevant tax treaty between China and Sweden. This article explains: http://www.china-briefing.com/news/2010/12/16/using-double-tax-treaties-to-maximize-china-investment-financial-effectiveness.html
    The VAT rate is 17 percent.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • KS says:

    What duty/taxes will apply with exporting a large fabricated steel boom structure from China (Shanghai) shipping to Sierra Leone, Africa??

    And how do you calculate it against a
    $300,000.00 USD (Steel Boom) + $190,000.00 USD Shipping Charge??

    Thanks.

  • @KS: The customs duty for exporting steel boom structure is 0 percent. VAT rate is 17 percent.
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • VB says:

    Where can I find the rules and regulations for import of Gold and Silver into China? Can one set up a trading company in China to import Gold and Silver and sell the same to Jewellers and Traders? What are the applicable VAT and other taxes for the same?

    Thanks

  • @VB: You can find relevant provisions here:
    http://www.pagold.net/List.asp?C-1-1328.html
    You can set up a trading company to sell gold and silver ornaments in China, the VAT rate is 17 percent, plus 5 percent consumption tax and applicable corporate income tax and import duties. For setting up a China Trading Company please see: http://www.asiabriefing.com/store/book/trading-with-china-398
    and for assistance contact our firm at china@dezshira.com
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • sandeep says:

    dear sir i want to import some agriculture machinery from china to india. how much tax and vat i have to pay

  • @Sandeep: There is no export duty imposed on agricultural machinery. Exporters in the country are subject to 17 percent VAT rate, but they are able to declare VAT rebate and the rebate rate varies on different types of machine, usually ranging from 11 percent to 14 percent.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • KS says:

    @Chris: Thank you. How do you go about properly calculating the VAT. Shipping cost + goods, or just on the goods?

    Thanks,

    Kyle

  • Anil jain says:

    Sir,
    I plan to open a new plant of door Profile in China, then manufacturing at China or export all material to India
    So what is the taxes will be calculated for China nation
    thanking your
    Anil

  • @Anil: The major taxes you will be subject to are value-added taxes and customs duties. You’ll need help with planning all this out, together with planning your registered capital and all these issues properly to cater accurately for the start up costs. For more information, please contact china@dezshira.com let us know where you’ll be establishing operations and our relevant regional office will be pleased to assist.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Varun says:

    i wan to know the taxes an custom duties for importing Marble from Italy to China

  • @Varun: The following taxes and custom duties apply to the import of marble:
    Lowest tax rate: 0%
    Normal tax rate: 80%
    Value-added tax rate: 17%

    Kind regards;
    Chris

  • Sunil Gupta says:

    sir,
    i want to tax planning on import goods from china to india ,

  • @Sunil; That is an Indian import tax question.
    You can refer to our India Briefing at http://www.india-briefing.com and type in “import taxes” in the search function. Alternatively contact our Delhi office directly at delhi@dezshira.com
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Babuna says:

    hi Chris.

    I need your help Chris. i have been searching Chinese taxes for week. I would like to know import sunflower oil to third country China from Russia and what would be the taxes and custom duties. Is it legal to Import sunflower oil to china? because last time we try to import arabseed from Russia but china don’t allow to buy arabseed from Russia .

    Many thanks Chris

  • @Babuna – It is legal to import sunflower oil from Russia to China. The normal import duty is 160 per cent, but it would be 9 per cent if there are relevant treaties between China and Russia. It is also subject to 13 per cent value-added tax.
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Elena says:

    Hi Chris
    perhaps you can help here: we may export artworks temporarily from China. I know that after 6 months it is possible to request an extension for another maximum 6 months, right? After that, what happens if:

    -we sell the artwork and it won’t return to China
    -we return the work late
    -don’t return the work at all because we changed our mind

    Thanks for your help!
    Elena

  • @Elena – we called the national customs hotline about this and was told that:
    1) It is possible to request an extension for another 6 months, and the application should be made 30 days prior to the expiration of the first 6 month period;
    2) When they apply to temporarily export artworks, they are required to pay a deposit fee that is equivalent to the amount of export duties for exporting the artwork. The deposit fee will be returned if the artwork is reimported to China within the stipulated period. But if the artwork is not returned to China within the period stipulated, the deposit fee will automatically be converted into export duties and paid to the Customs, regardless of whether the work has been sold, returned late, or not returned at all.
    I trust that clarifies the issue
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Ana says:

    Hi Chris, could you please help us to figure out all taxes involved in selling HS code 711790 from Spain into China & HK?
    Many thanks in advance and best regards,
    Ana

  • @Ana; Please find the tax info for HS 7117900000 as follows:
    Normal import duty: 130%
    Minimum import duty (applies in the existence of relevant tax treaties): 35%
    VAT rate: 17%
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Julia says:

    Dear Chris,
    Could you please assist us to clarify import taxes/duties to China for Hs code 39129000
    Many thanks in advance!
    Have a nice day!
    Best regards,
    Julia

  • @Julia: The normal import duty rate for HS code 39129000 is 45%. The minimum import duty rate of 6.5% will apply if there are certain tax treaties between the export country and China. The product will also be subject to 17% value added tax.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • angati gems and jewellery says:

    Hi Chris,
    I want to import cut and polished natural semi precious stone in to china from India or Hong Kong , then what will be the import duty ,VAT and other duties applicable.
    In other case i export rough gems stone from china to other countries what duties will be applicable. Would you suggest any agency in guangzhou city ,china who can assist me in documentation at competitive prices.

    With thanks
    abhay
    abhaymookim@yahoo.com

  • Dear
    How much for import duty ,consumption tax and valuated tax if we import thr hand bags (H.S.Code 4202.21) from Hong Kong to China?
    Can I refund the import duty ,consumptiontax,VAT when exporting?
    Thank you very much for your kind assistance.

  • @ Angati: The normal import rate of polished natural semi precious stone is 14 percent, the minimum import rate of 3 percent applies if tax treaty status applies and relevant provisions are activated. The VAT rate is 17 percent. There is no export rate imposed on rough gemstones.

    @ Kamolrat: The normal import rate is 100 percent, the minimum import rate of 10 percent applies if tax treaty exists and relevant provisions are activated. The VAT rate is 17 percent. Import duty and consumption tax are not refundable. VAT is refundable only when you are exporting from China.

    For more information, please contact china@dezshira.com
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Amit Rathore says:

    Dear Sir,

    Good Morning!!

    Could you please help me to know that in which category cotton linter pulp comes and what will be the custom duty on this when importing from china to India. Also please advise me the whole process for importing any material from China to India.

    Amit Rathore
    IOL Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals Ltd
    Punjab – India

  • @Amit: The normal import rate for cotton linter pulp is 8 per cent, the export rate is 10 per cent and the value-added tax rate is 17 per cent (H.S code: 4701000000). The minimum import rate is zero if tax treaties and relevant provisions are activated.

    In regards to the whole process for importing, please see our magazine on sourcing from China here: http://www.asiabriefing.com/store/book/sourcing-from-china-413 or contact china@dezshira.com

    Best regards;
    Chris.

  • Amit Rathore says:

    Dear Sir,

    Many thanks for your words…

  • Hui Ling says:

    Dear Chris,

    I chanced by your website when I was searching for information about import to China.

    I would appreciate if you could help to enlighten me on the below:

    Our company is based in Singapore and we fabricate steel structure for our client in China. Our client is a Shipyard in China building oil rigs and we supply them some fabricated steel structures for their rigs. Upon completion of the fabricated components, we ship them to China and listing them as the consignee. I would like to check who is liable for the import duty, taxes & VAT in China?

    If our client pays for these import duty, taxes & VAT, can they claim it back when they export the oil rig?

    Thank you very much for your kind assistance.

  • @Hui Ling: The consignee is liable for import duties and VAT in China. They cannot claim refunds on the import duties, however, they could claim up to a 17% export VAT refund when exporting the oil rigs. If you require professional assistance, please contact our firm at china@dezshira.com
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Rob Smith says:

    Planning on importing a food additive from US to china. The additive will be used in the processing of the food and then the food will be exported back to the US. Does this fall under PSM thus no VAT or duties?

  • @Rob – To be qualified for PSM, all the material used in producing the food must be supplied by the U.S. company.
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Anna says:

    Hello!

    I present Yarmarka Company Russia, we’re producing brand packaged cereals beans (and mixtures with them with no flavoring agents and even salt) and would love to start collaboration with China. I’d be very grateful if you could answer which certificates and documents are necessary for us in Russia to successfully export our products (grocery) to China ? Thank you in advance!

  • @Anna – I have replied to you via your email address.
    Best regards;

    Chris

  • Rob Smith says:

    Chris:

    My email in April used the wrong terminology. The food additive I am exporting to China will be PIM, not PSM. I plan on shipping product to bonded warehouse wherein the food processor will receive product. I am advised that the processors have the Processing Trade Agreeement “handbook” on file with customs. Is any VAT or Duty the responsibility of the processor to have them exempt? Do I need a Trading License is it unnecessary? Thank you.

  • @Rob: These are very specific questions. Our team will get back to you directly and we need to know more details. Bear in mind we may need to charge for time here, this is more than a simple query about tariffs. However we’ll reply via email and you can follow up from there.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Babuna says:

    Dear Chris

    Could you please help me check what are the HS codes of dairy product? we want to export sunflower cooking oil and Milk to china. By the way please how much tax costs and tariffs.

    Many thanks

    Babuna

  • Simon Tift says:

    Hi Chris

    I am looking for a reliable HS consultancy service based in Hong Kong able to deliver training to my team of Merchandisers regarding HS codes in to the UK.
    I have consultants that I regularly use within the UK but I am interested in what options may be available closing to my Sourcing office.

    Are such services available?

    Are able to provide some recomendations?

    Regards

    Simon

  • @Simon – we don’t source suppliers – we’re tax lawyers. We do have an office in Hong Kong but it does company formation, accounting, China business planning, that sort of service.
    I guess the best thing to do is to google and see who you can find. Or reach out to the Hong Kong General Chamber of Commerce – http://www.chamber.org.hk and ask if they have a member that does this type of work.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Joshua says:

    Hi Chris,

    1. If my product is subjected to a MFN Duty Rate of 10% but an Interim Duty Rate of 2%. Does that mean I only have to pay 2% instead of 10%?

    2. Also, do I have to pay VAT of 13%?

    3. Are the above Duty and Tax (VAT) subjected to products imported to China for domestic consumption? If I were to import raw materials to China for reprocessing and export, do I have to pay for the Duty and Tax (VAT)? Or do I have to pay upfront first and collect them back when I export?

    Please advise,
    Joshua

  • @Joshua: According to the “Regulations of the People’s Republic of China on Import and Export Duties”, if an Interim Duty (Temporary duty) applies to import goods which are also subject to MFN Duty, the duty should be paid based on the Interim Duty rate. Therefore, you only have to pay 2 percent instead of 10 percent. But you still have to pay VAT of 13 percent. The products imported to China for domestic consumption should be subject to VAT. If you were to import raw materials for the purpose of re-export, the raw materials imported to China should be exempt from import VAT or consumption duty. The “Tax Exemption Certificate for Processing of Supplied Materials” shall be provided for the exempt of VAT and consumption duty of the re-export goods.
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Tamas says:

    Dear Chris,

    I would like to import hand made goosedown comforters from Hungary to China (Beijing).

    What fees (tax, duty) should we count with? Who should pays the tax, and duty rates (Our company or my customers)?

    Thank you in advance.

    Kind regards,

    Tamas

  • @Tamas: Your products shall be subject to a MFN (most-favored-nation treatment) duty rate of 10 percent and a value-added tax rate of 17 percent. The tax and duties should be paid by your company.
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Jeremy says:

    Hi Chris,

    My company is based in Singapore and we are planning to export electronics components (Capacitors, resistors etc) to a new China customer in Beijing. Assuming the value of the goods is worth USD$10,000 what is the import taxes and other costs of importing into China?

    Thanks

  • @Jeremy – Your product should be subject to a value-added tax rate ranging from 15 per cent to 17 per cent (this depends on the materials used and the exact kind of electronic components). The import tariff rate should be zero based on the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) signed between China and Singapore. Best wishes – Chris

  • Mariana says:

    Dear Chris,

    I would like to import Bulgarian Rose Oil and Rose Oil Cosmetic Products from Bulgaria to China.

    What fees (tax, duty or others) should we pay? Who should pay the tax and the duty?(Our company or our buyers)?

    Thank you in advance.

    Kind regards,
    Mariana

  • @Mariana – Your products shall be subject to a MFN (most-favored-nation treatment) duty rate of 6.5 percent and a value-added tax rate of 17 percent. The tax and duties should be paid by your company.
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Gerald says:

    We purchase goods from China as components for a product we assemble in Canada, and we sometimes need to send samples of these same components back to our supplier for quality review.
    We get charged VAT. Is there any harmonized code that can be applied to samples being returned, that would avoid the VAT?

  • @Gerald: For this question, I think we will need more information/description from you on the specific component you are sending to China and that is being returned in order for us to find the harmonized code that applies. I have emailed you about this directly.
    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Duraimani says:

    Hi, Informative article. Thanks.

    We import chemicals and intermediates from China. I heard that the export rebate for chemicals and intermediates used in antibiotics is reduced from July ’14. Is this information correct. if so, let me know the rebate allowed for antibiotic intermediates.

    eagerly await your feedback.

    Regards,
    Duraimani.

  • Graham Smith says:

    Please advise the percentage for the import duty for imported garments (children’s clothing). Belgium to China.

    Thank-you,

    Graham

  • AV says:

    Hello,
    how is the Chinese custom handling if a foreigner takes standard/ regular coins (no historic or bullions – just regular current currency e.g. USD or EUR) out of the country? Especially if exceeding the USD 5.000 threashold?
    What if I declared the higher value of currency (albeit paper, but monex nevertheless) when entering – and thus now going back with just “another” form than paper?
    Thank you very much!
    AV

  • @Duraimani: To date this year there has been no news related to the reduction of export rebates for chemicals and intermediates for this year. I clarify as follows:
    •The current export rebate rate for general medicine is 15%.
    •The current export rebate rate for antibiotics is 13%.
    •The current export rebate rate for intermediates is 9%.

    @Graham Smith: As China granted MFN (Most-Favoured-Nation) status to Belgium, preferential tariffs can be applied to items imported from Belgium to China. Basically, there are six different tax rates of the import duty for children’s garments: 14%, 16%, 17.5%, 19%, 20%, and 25%. To make sure which rate is applicable, more detailed information such as the type of materials and percentage used in the finished garment, plus the type of product (coat, pants, underwear, etc.), and style (jacket, cloak, etc.) also need to be provided. You can email us for further details at china@dezshira.com with specifics if you wish.

    @AV: This question is regulated by “Provisional Administrative Measures on Cash in Foreign Currencies Brought into and out of China” (Hui Fa (2003) No.102). Both coins and bank notes (paper) are regarded as “cash”. Consequently, whether you take bank notes or coins, it does not make any difference. Additionally, please note that according to Chinese regulations:
    •If the foreign currency you take does not exceed the amount of declared in your last entry into China, you shall not be required to apply for the Permit for Bringing Foreign Exchange out of China and the Customs shall refer to the records of the amount of cash in foreign currencies declared by you for your last entry into China and allow exit.
    •If there is no record of declared amount or the amount exceeds the amount of cash in foreign currencies declared for the last entry:
    – Where the amount of cash in foreign currencies to be brought out of China is US$5,000 equivalent or below, you shall be allowed exit without having to apply for the Permit, unless you make multiple trips within a day or within a short period.
    – Where the amount of cash in foreign currencies to be brought out of China ranges from US$5,000 equivalent to US$10,000 equivalent, you shall be required to apply for the Permit with a bank and be allowed exit upon presentation of the Permit bearing the seal of the bank. However, if you present several Permits and the total amount of such Permits exceeds US$10,000 equivalent, you shall not be allowed exit.
    – Where the amount of cash in foreign currencies to be brought out of China exceeds US$10,000 equivalent, you shall be required to apply to a branch of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange at the location of the account opening bank of foreign currency deposit or the bank selling such foreign currencies to you. The Customs shall allow exit upon presentation of the Permit bearing the seal of the SAFE bureau.

    Hope that helps guys
    Best regards;
    Chris

  • Georgie says:

    Dear Chris,

    I would like to make photo luminescent (luminous) paints and do that I need to mix white paint with some pigments.

    I would like to import the pigment (this is in a powder form) from China to the UK. Is this considered as importing raw materials? How much tax will I have to pay? Is there a difference if the pigment is in a liquid form?

    Please help me out, I would be grateful to you, for ever.

    Regards,
    G

  • Angela Lee says:

    Dear Chris!

    My company is exporting CO2 modules to China (HS CODE: 90279080 or 90271010)
    As far as I know it is duty free since it is environment related product.
    However, we’ve been charged with 7% + 17% tax.
    I am guessing the 17% is the VAT but what could the 7% be?

    Thank you very much in advance for your help!

    Angela

  • @Georgie: First, as a buyer and exporter, you have no import duty to pay tax to China tax authorities. But you do need to fulfil any import tax in the UK and will need to search for a UK firm to advise you on this.

    @Angela Lee: The HS code you provided above does not exist. However, based on the information you offered, the most probable answer is the 17% is VAT, the 7% is the preferential tax for import products.

    Best wishes
    Chris

  • Andreas says:

    Hi,

    how is it, to import sheet music into China? Does I only have to pay the VAT (13%) or is there a special Tax? I heard all book have to cecked of the Ministary of Probaganda and you have to pay 15% extra Taxes. Is it right?

    Best wishes
    Andreas

  • @Andreas: The importation of sheet music into China falls under the category of import of books. The only tax imposed on it is VAT at the rate of 13%. There are no other direct taxes. However, all imported manuscripts must go through preliminary reviews, while the reviewer is not the Ministry of Propaganda, but the state-owned companies which have the exclusive right to import books. They typically ask for a 75% cut of the retail price, which usually renders the transactions deliberately unprofitable. – Best regards, Chris

  • Çağrı Ardıç says:

    Hello to all;

    I would like to import 845730 – Multi-station transfer machines for working metal to China.

    What are the custom rates for it.

    Thank you.

    Best Wishes

    Çağrı

  • @Çağrı Ardıç: For the importion of ” 845730 – Multi-station transfer machines for working metal”:
    • The general tariff rate is 20%
    • The preferential tariff rate is 5% (whether one can enjoy this benefit depends on the country of origin of the goods)
    • The VAT rate is 17%
    Best regards;

    Chris

  • Michael says:

    we are preparing to set up production of 6, 7.5 and 9 meter electric boats. Currently looking at what the best strategic location for production will be. Could you help us with the following scenarios:

    1. produce entire boat including engine + batteries etc. in China and sell both in China.
    2. produce entire boat including engine + batteries etc. in The Netherlands and import into China.
    3. produce only the hull in China, import engine + batteries into China, then assemble in China and sell in China.

    The value of engine is 20.000 EUR, value of batteries is 35.000 EUR. What would we pay on top of that for import taxes, VAT and custom duties?

    Thanks!

  • @Michael: For the engine, the general tariff is 14%, the VAT is 17%, the sales tax is 0% . For the battery, the general tariff is 90%, the VAT is 17% and the sales tax is 0%.
    So the highest tax rate would be: 20,000×(14%+17%)+35,000×​(90%+17%)=43650 EUR.

    As to the suggestion for location, it’s best you consult with one of our professional team to get a comprehensive report, including the analysis of price, market, transportation and policies – email for this to china@dezshira.com
    Best regards;
    Chris.

  • Lee says:

    We are planning to import German Beer (HS 22030000) from EU into Guangdong/China.
    Its unclear to me what the Importduty and Consumertax rates are.
    At the moment we are investigating if its wiser to set up a own company in China.

    Thanks in advance
    Lee

  • Susan Allen says:

    Hi,

    Could you kindly tell me if I carry in three American Gold Eagle coins (total value approx $3600USD) will I have to declare it even though it is less than the 5,000 limit? And if so, would I have to pay duty on it?

    Thanks,

    Susan J Allen

  • @Lee: We have replied to you directly on this.
    @Susan: As the value is under USD5000 you may not need to declare it. However, customs may still challenge you and ask you if these are to be resold. That would break a number of laws, and consequently could cause some issues as regards why you are carrying such unusual personal belongings with you.
    Best regards;
    Chris

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