Customs Policy Update – September 2016
General Administration of Customs (GAC) announced the Implementation of Customs Inspection Regulations
On 26 September, GAC announced the Implementation of Customs Inspection Regulations, which will be effective from 1 November 2016. It governs the specific operational procedures, rights and obligations related to new customs inspection regulations and complements the existing proactive disclosure system, engagement practice of professional bodies and inspection procedures.
GAC announced a revised directory of 2017 Harmonized System
Subsequent to the announcement of a revised directory of 2017 Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System by World Customs Organization, GAC released the Chinese revised directory of 2017 Harmonized System on 1 September 2016. This is the fundamental directory for formulating and implementing import and export tariffs, trade controls, statistics and other import and export management measures in China. The revised directory will be officially effective from 1 January 2017 in China.
Cross-strait customs to implement a pilot scheme for authorized economic operator (AEO)
GAC released the Announcement  No.49 on 7 September 2016, pursuant to which cross-strait customs will agree to implement a pilot scheme mutually recognized for “authorized economic operator (AEO)” since 1 October 2016. The customs in China and Taiwan will facilitate their customs clearance procedures for each other’s AEO entities, including the simplified approval of import goods documents, the reduced inspection rate of import goods and the higher priority given to customs clearance of import goods. The customs involved in the pilot scheme include Nanjing, Fuzhou and Xiamen in China as well as Kaohsiung and Keelung in Taiwan.
Tax rate for certain import of information technology goods of most favoured nations lowered for its first time
On 14 September 2016, GAC released the Announcement on Issues related to the Adjustment of Tax Rate for Certain Import of Information Technology Goods of Most Favoured Nations (GAC Announcement  No.50), pursuant to which the relevant tax rate will be lowered for its first time from 15 September 2016. In addition, reporting entities should pay more attention to the revised commodity coding for certain information technology products by China Customs to enjoy respective tax reduction.
Management system of place of origin for regions under GAC’s special supervision to go live
On 26 September 2016, GAC released the Announcement  No.53 to state the management system of place of origin for regions under GAC’s special supervision (i.e. free trade zones under supervision) will go live on 1 October 2016. Importers can input the electronic data and inquire the use of certificate of origin through the system, which could allow entities to enjoy the agreed or preferential tax rate of domestic goods.
GAC governed the filing of declaration form of import and export goods under preferential trade agreement
On 20 September 2016, GAC released the Announcement of Regulating the Filing of Declaration Form of Import and Export Goods under Preferential Trade Agreement (GAC Announcement  No.51), pursuant to which the new filing requirements will be applicable to the declaration form of import and export goods under preferential trade agreement since 1 October 2016. The revised requirements govern both the completion of the field of documents within the declaration form under preferential trade agreement and the table of corresponding documents.
General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) and GAC revised the Catalogue of Import and Export Commodities for Inspection and Quarantine
AQSIQ and GAC jointly revised the Catalogue of Import and Export Commodities to be Inspected and Quarantined by Entry-Exit Authorities (2016). The regulatory requirement (B) of inspecting and quarantining commodities, including toys, children vehicles and child safety seats, has been removed since 1 September 2016. The authorities will no longer inspect or quarantine these commodities.
GAC introduced the Special Bill for Delayed Payment of Import Commodities
GAC released the Announcement  No.47 to introduce the Special Bill for Delayed Payment of Import Commodities solely for the use of customs to receive delayed payment of import commodities from consignee of import goods since 1 September 2016.
Update on Local Customs Regulations
Nanjing Customs introduced social intermediaries to assist in inspection and verification
On 13 September 2016, Nanjing Customs announced the 2016 List of Social Intermediaries assisting in Inspection and Verification to disclose the preliminary list of social intermediates that provide assistance in inspection and verification.
New regulatory policy on cross-border e-commerce entities in Zhejiang Province
Department of Commerce of Zhejiang Province, together with National Bureau of Statistics of Zhejiang Province, State Administration of Taxation, Zhejiang Bureau of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange, Hangzhou and Ningbo Customs, Zhejiang Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau and Ningbo Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau, announced the Interim Measure of Cross-Border E-Commerce Management in Zhejiang Province. The Measure categorizes cross-border e-commerce operating entities into four types based on their business nature, namely self-built platform, e-commerce application, e-commerce service and third-party platform. Subsequent to filing and registration, they can enjoy the benefits of financial subsidy and tax reduction, act as illustrative examples, have priority in customs clearance and are subject to simplified customs inspection.