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Import Declaration Required on anything more than HK $4000 ?

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  1. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by renHK:
    Unfortunately, it's not the shipper's responsibility to make the declaration or pay the 50 cents.
    Then get a better shipper. We move shipments of all sorts of stuff in and out of HK all the time and we have never had to make a declaration of this sort.

  2. #12

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    I spoke to a representative of UPS about this, and he told me they only make the declaration for textiles, because an import/export license is required. For all other items, he said, you are supposed to make the declaration yourself.


  3. #13

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    I need to apologise and eat some humble pie on this. I've just spoken at length to the person in our office who handles our logistics and the situation is more complicated than I thought.

    Outbound (which is most of what we do) the declarations are indeed all handled by our shipping agents as part of the service (we use HKDC, the local office of Royale). Personally I have also used the small shippers in Worldwide House to send stuff with a value in excess of $4,000 to The Philippines and they have done all the paperwork.

    Inbound it is apparently very hit-and-miss, depending on who the inbound agent is. Our experience does in fact match yours that UPS, Fedex & DHL never do these declarations. But many of the smaller or local agents do; if we are using HKDC (our preferred shipper) to bring stuff in then again it is all handled by them. Unfortunately, our logistics person doesn't have a sure way of telling for other agents whether the declaration has been made or not unless a letter arrives from Customs, like the one you got I guess.

    Moreover, I have made personal imports (online shopping) in excess of $4000, and without being chased by Customs, so I guess it depends on who looks at the invoice to determine whether it is "personal use, not for trade".

    So in conclusion, this obviously is an issue, and care is needed to make sure that all stuff that is for personal use is labelled as such as clearly as possible on the invoice or whatever paperwork accompanies it. And there are shippers out there who deal with it as part of the service, although this is often something more under your control for export than for import.

    Apologies again for replying before on the basis of limited experience and without getting the facts straight.


  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by PDLM:
    Moreover, I have made personal imports (online shopping) in excess of $4000, and without being chased by Customs, so I guess it depends on who looks at the invoice to determine whether it is "personal use, not for trade".

    So in conclusion, this obviously is an issue, and care is needed to make sure that all stuff that is for personal use is labelled as such as clearly as possible on the invoice or whatever paperwork accompanies it.
    This is indeed a complicated issue, and I was totally ignorant about having to make a declaration on and had received several other packages before this notice arrived. For those others, I had never been sent a notice either. I think it's a matter of spot checking, as they can't possibly chase up every package that enters Hong Kong.

    One more clarification though: "For personal use, not for trade" is apparently not a valid exemption, unless it is "personal baggage", i.e. in your luggage when you are traveling. That's what the guy at Census & Statistics told me. If you read the list of exemptions, he appears to be right, unfortunately.

  5. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by luxeicon:
    Hmmm...this is the first i've heard of this! Which is a worry, because i've just bought and about to ship over from the US about USD$3k worth of baby gear by DHL, and it should get here by the 5th of Jan.

    I know my shipper in the US has to prepare a commercial invoice, but thats about it. I was told i didn't have any paperwork to do!

    Can anyone shed some light please?

    Thank You.
    Did you do an Import Declaration for the Baby Gear that you got (which was sent via DHL)? I asked DHL and they can do the Import Declaration for you for a fee..

  6. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by PDLM:
    I need to apologise and eat some humble pie on this. I've just spoken at length to the person in our office who handles our logistics and the situation is more complicated than I thought.

    Outbound (which is most of what we do) the declarations are indeed all handled by our shipping agents as part of the service (we use HKDC, the local office of Royale). Personally I have also used the small shippers in Worldwide House to send stuff with a value in excess of $4,000 to The Philippines and they have done all the paperwork.

    Inbound it is apparently very hit-and-miss, depending on who the inbound agent is. Our experience does in fact match yours that UPS, Fedex & DHL never do these declarations. But many of the smaller or local agents do; if we are using HKDC (our preferred shipper) to bring stuff in then again it is all handled by them. Unfortunately, our logistics person doesn't have a sure way of telling for other agents whether the declaration has been made or not unless a letter arrives from Customs, like the one you got I guess.

    Moreover, I have made personal imports (online shopping) in excess of $4000, and without being chased by Customs, so I guess it depends on who looks at the invoice to determine whether it is "personal use, not for trade".

    So in conclusion, this obviously is an issue, and care is needed to make sure that all stuff that is for personal use is labelled as such as clearly as possible on the invoice or whatever paperwork accompanies it. And there are shippers out there who deal with it as part of the service, although this is often something more under your control for export than for import.

    Apologies again for replying before on the basis of limited experience and without getting the facts straight.

    I checked with the Cesus Department recently as well to check and according to them as long as you receive an item which is more than HKD$1,000. But if it is thru FEDEX, DHL or other couriers, you can check since they provide the import declaration service..




    Import / Export Declaration

    Any person who imports or exports any article, other than an exempted article, is required to lodge an accurate and complete import/export declaration within 14 days after the importation/exportation of the article. (SEE ANNEX)

    Trade Declaration Collection and Processing Statistics

    Annex (Import / Export Declarations)

    Under the Import and Export (Registration) Regulations (Cap. 60 sub. leg. E), every person who imports or exports any article other than an exempted article is required to lodge with the Commissioner of Customs and Excise an accurate and complete import/export declaration within 14 days after the importation/exportation of the article. Prosecution may be initiated against any person who fails to lodge the required declaration, or knowingly or recklessly lodges any declaration that is inaccurate in any material particular. The Commissioner of Customs and Excise has also authorised specific officers of the Census and Statistics Department to enforce the regulations relating to the lodgment of accurate and complete import/export declarations.

    While you are not required to lodge an import/export declaration in respect of an exempted article, you are requested to advise your carriers/forwarders to indicate clearly on the cargo manifest the relevant category of your exempted article (see below) in order to facilitate trade documentation and verification work. It should however be noted that this arrangement does not prejudice this Department's right to require you to provide proof or evidence to support your claim of exempted article, or to take any action provided under the Import and Export (Registration) Regulations (Cap. 60 sub. leg. E), when necessary.




    Exempted Articles Back to Top

    The categories of exempted articles as stipulated in regulation 3 of the Import and Export (Registration) Regulations (Cap. 60 sub. leg. E) are as follows :
    transhipment cargo consigned on a through bill of lading or a through air waybill;
    transit cargo destined for a place outside Hong Kong and is passing through Hong Kong on the same ship or aircraft without transhipment;
    articles imported or exported by the HKSAR Government;
    ships' stores, including bunker fuel, for use by or consumption on board the vessel on which the stores are carried;
    aircraft stores, including aviation fuel, for use by or consumption on board the aircraft on which the stores are carried;
    personal baggage including any article which is shown to the satisfaction of the Customs to be imported or exported otherwise than for trade or business, but not including motor vehicles;
    any postal packet the contents of which are valued at less than $4,000;
    any article -
    which consists solely of, and is marked clearly as, advertising material and which is supplied free of charge;
    which consists solely of, and is marked clearly as, a sample of any product and which is intended, to the satisfaction of the Customs, to be distributed free of charge for the purpose of advertising the article of which it is a sample;
    valued at less than $1,000, which consists solely of a sample of any product and is intended, to the satisfaction of the Customs, to be used for the purpose of advertising the article of which it is a sample;
    which is imported solely for the purpose of exhibition and which is intended, to the satisfaction of the Customs, to be exported after it has been exhibited and is neither sold nor disposed of in any other way in Hong Kong;
    which is exported solely for the purpose of exhibition and which is intended, to the satisfaction of the Customs, to be imported after exhibition;
    which is imported after having been exported for exhibition in accordance with sub-paragraph (v);
    which is imported or exported under and in accordance with an A.T.A. Carnet;
    which is imported solely for the purpose of being used in a sports competition and which is intended, to the satisfaction of the Customs, to be exported after the competition and is neither sold nor disposed of in any other way in Hong Kong;
    which is exported solely for the purpose of being used in a sports competition and which is intended, to the satisfaction of the Customs, to be imported after the competition; or
    which is imported after having been exported for use in a sports competition in accordance with sub-paragraph (ix);
    marine fish, including edible crustaceans, molluscs and other similar edible products derived from the sea, arriving in Hong Kong direct from fishing grounds on fishing craft registered or licensed in Hong Kong;
    gifts of a personal nature where no payment is or is to be made by the receiver thereof;
    used empty freight containers which are -
    regularly imported and exported; and
    used solely for the carriage of articles which are imported or exported;
    any aircraft part of accessory imported or exported by an air transport undertaking operating air services on international route; the principal place of business of which is situated outside Hong Kong, for the purpose of being -
    used in the repair or maintenance of aircraft owned or chartered by such undertaking and operated by it on any international air route; or
    given in non-profitable exchange for any other aircraft part or accessory to any other similar air transport undertaking for a similar use, and which is used for such purpose or so exchanged and used;
    any article imported by a transport undertaking operating sea or air freight transport services on international routes, the principal place of business of which is situated outside Hong Kong, for the purpose of being used in the repair and maintenance of freight containers operated by that undertaking in the transport of goods by sea or air on its international routes and which is used for such purpose;
    banknotes and coins after issue into circulation, being legal tender in any country;
    any radio and television production and broadcasting equipment and specially adapted radio or television vans and their equipment -
    which is owned and imported by a person established or resident outside Hong Kong; and
    which is intended, to the satisfaction of the Commissioner, to be exported after having been used in Hong Kong;
    any means of transport for the purpose of being used as a means of conveyance at the time when it is being imported or exported, other than those which are imported or exported as cargo or part thereof.