Customs Support for China

Both importers and exporters in China are required to apply for a Customs Registration code (“CR Code”) from the customs authorities, or to cooperate with a party that has such a CR Code and is authorized to act as their 'importer' or 'exporter of record' for their shipments. This CR code should appear on the customs clearance paperwork for all your shipments to China, except for documents and personal effects. We would therefore like to ask you to clearly communicate the importance of these new requirements (for both the HS Code and CR Code) with your trading partners in China, as your shipments to and from China can be placed 'on hold' by the Chinese customs authorities until all necessary information is available to them.

Additional information regarding the application for a Customs Registration code for Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen.

Uniform product classification code

For all shipments to and from China – Import and Export –, with the exception of documents, it is now mandatory to indicate the Harmonized System code (“HS Code”) on the paperwork for customs. Specifying the correct HS code, supplemented by an accurate and detailed description of the goods in the supporting paperwork, will help speed up the HS grading and therefore final customs clearance. View example of DHL Waybill or View example of DHL Proforma.

Removal of the exception to import duties for samples and advertising material

Samples and advertising material with a value not exceeding 400 RMB (currently slightly more than 46.50 euros) were previously exempt from VAT and import duties. However, this 'duty-free' value threshold is no longer in effect from today. The new threshold will be based on the import duties to be paid, which can be derived from the HS code. Any shipment of which the import duties to be paid are less than 50 RMB (almost 6.00 euros) remains free of VAT and import duties.

Regulations for private shipments

Personal effects are limited to unaccompanied baggage or goods/gifts sent to individuals in a reasonable amount for personal use.

  • Threshold: Less than CNY1,000 (USD153)
  • If the shipment contains only one item, it can still be routed as personal belongings even if the value is more than CNY 1,000 (USD 153). However, Customs reserves the right to approve the import or return it to its origin. For unaccompanied baggage: passport with valid visa and entry/exit stamp through immigration; Baggage declaration form stamped by border customs with the list of items. For goods/gifts sent to a private individual: Copy of addressee's ID; List of goods/gifts in detail and a pro forma invoice