Customs Policy Update – May 2018
Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council announced that from 1 July 2018, the MFN tariff rates of some imported consumer goods will be lowered, affecting 1,449 tax items. Because of the adjustment of MFN rates, from 1 July 2018, the interim MFN rates of 210 imported goods items will be cancelled, including:
The average imported tariffs of clothing and shoes, kitchenware and gym equipment will be lowered from 15.9% to 7.1%;
The average imported tariffs of household appliances such as washing machines and refrigerators will be lowered from 20.5% to 8%;
The average imported tariffs of bred and fished aquatic products and processed foods such as mineral water will be lowered from 15.2% to 6.9%;
The average imported tariffs of detergents, cosmetics such as skin and hair care products and some of the health care products will be lowered from 8.4% to 2.9%.
Other products with lowered tariffs include canned food, beverages, sanitary ware, jewelry, bags and suitcases, televisions, watches, musical instruments, stationery, glasses, spectacle frames and eyeglasses, cameras and bicycles.
Announcement of Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council on Lowering Import Tariffs of Automobiles and Auto Parts (CTC Announcement  No. 3)
Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council announced that from 1 July 2018, the import tariffs of automobiles and auto parts will be lowered. The rates of 135 HS code with a rate of 25% and 4 HS code with a rate of 20% under the automobiles category will be lowered to 15%, while the rates of 79 HS code with rates of 8%, 10%, 15%, 20% and 25% under the auto part category will be lowered to 6%.
In view of the above-mentioned announcement, KPMG China published an issue of China Tax Alert: Significant reduction of Import Tariffs on Automotive Vehicles and Parts.
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Letter of the Office of Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council on Issues relating to Tariffs of Products Listed in China-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement (CTC Office Announcement  No. 11)
On 15 May, the Office of Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council issued a letter, announcing that the tariffs of two HS code (i.e. 15149110, 15149900) under rapeseed oil are restored to 9% in 2018 according to China-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement. The tariff adjustment will be in effect within three days after the issue of the letter.
Joint Announcement of State Administration of Taxation and General Administration of Customs on VAT on Imported Aircraft for Lease (Joint Announcement  No. 24)
From 1 June 2018, the Customs will stop collecting the VAT on import of aircraft for lease (heading No. 8802) under the import supervision categories of 1500(lease under one year), 1523(lease trade) and 9800(lease tax). The collection and administration of VAT on import of aircraft for lease will be implemented by the tax authorities in accordance with the existing VAT policy.
Announcement on the Issue of Electronic Messaging Format V1.2 for Inbound and Outbound Water and Air Transportation Cargo Manifests (GAC Announcement  No. 40)
According to the GAC Announcement  No. 56, GAC developed the electronic messaging format V1.2 for inbound and outbound water and air transportation cargo manifests, with changes in the messaging formats for the “original manifest” and “shipping order” of inbound and outbound water and air transportation cargo. The Announcement will be in effect from 1 June 2018.
Announcement on the Issue of Electronic Messaging Format V1.2 for the Declaration of Water and Air Transportation Vehicles for Inbound and Outbound and Domestic Shipment of Goods under Customs Supervision (GAC  No. 41)
According to the GAC Announcement  No. 56, GAC developed the electronic messaging format V1.2 for the declaration of water and air transportation vehicles for inbound and outbound and domestic shipment of goods under customs supervision, with adjustments in data items of filing, progress and messaging for water and air transportation. The Announcement will be in effect from 1 June 2018.
Announcement on Issues relating to the Trial Implementation of TIR Convention (GAC Announcement  No. 42)
In order to facilitate the implementation of TIR convention in China, GAC decided to expand the trial area for TIR by adding Dalian Port as a trial port. The original trial areas include Khorgos Port, Ilkeshtan Port, Erenhot Highway Port, Manzhouli Highway Port and Suifenhe Port. In addition, the carriers and vehicles from countries with which China has signed bilateral motor transportation agreements can engage in TIR transportation activities in accordance with TIR regulations. The Announcement will be in effect from 18 May 2018.
Announcement of General Administration of Customs on Issues relating to Taiwan Compatriot’s Registry for Professional Qualification Exam for personnel handling Exit and Entry Quarantine business (GAC Announcement  No. 45)
According to Measures for Promoting Cross-strait Economic and Cultural Exchange and Cooperation issued by the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council and National Development and Reform Commission, Taiwan residents with Mainland Travel Permit can sign up for the Professional Qualification Exam for personnel handling Exit and Entry Quarantine business. The Announcement will be in effect from 18 May 2018.
Announcement on the Issue of Sectoral Standards of Customs (GAC Announcement  No. 46)
According to Measures for Administration of the Sectoral Standards of Customs of the People's Republic of China (for Trial Implementation) (issued by GAC Decree No. 140, revised by GAC Decree No. 235), GAC revised the Customs Informatization Terminology included in the Sectoral Standards of Customs, which will be in effect from 1 September 2018.
Announcement on the Issue of Implementation Rules for Pre-shipment Inspection for Solid Wastes Imported for Use as Raw Materials (GAC Announcement  No. 48)
According to Supervision and Administration Measures for the Inspection and Quarantine of Solid Wastes Imported for Use as Raw Materials, GAC set out Implementation Rules for Pre-shipment Inspection for Solid Wastes Imported for Use as Raw Materials, effective from 1 June 2018.
Announcement of General Administration of Customs and the Endangered Species Import and Export Management Office on the Implementation of Paperless Customs Declaration Networking for Import and Export Permits of Wild Animals and Plants (Announcement  No. 49)
According to the announcement, the paperless networking of customs declaration of import and export permits for wild animals and plants will be implemented throughout the country. From 1 June 2018, the paperless networking of customs declaration will be implemented nationwide on the existing “Two types and three categories” of wild animals and plants import and export permits, i.e. import and export permit under Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, import and export permit for wild animals and plants of PRC and non-Import and Export Wildlife Species Catalogue Species Certificate. As for wild animals and plants and related products subject to the management of import and export permits for wild animals and plants, the related customs declaration shall be dealt with in a paperless manner. The customs will verify the electronic data of permits through online verification of import and export permits for wild animals and plants.
Announcement on Issues relating to the Abolishment of Inbound / Outbound Clearance Form (GAC Announcement  No. 50)
GAC is to abolish the Inbound/outbound Clearance Form. Specifically speaking, for declaration of imported goods that require statutory inspection and quarantine, the clearance form code and number will no longer be filled in the column for attached documents on the customs declaration form. Companies can declare their products through “Single Window” for customs and inspection and quarantine declaration. The Announcement will be in effect from 1 June 2018.
Announcement on the Abolishment of Inbound Animals and Plants Quarantine Approval Regime for Certain Products (GAC Announcement  No. 51)
According to Administrative Measures for Quarantine Approval Regime for Inbound Animals and Plants (issued by AQSIQ Decree No. 25, revised by AQSIQ Decree No.170 and GAC Decree No. 238), after risk assessment, GAC decided to abolish the quarantine approval regime for inbound animals and plants for certain products from 1 June 2018. Companies will no longer need to apply for inbound animals and plants quarantine approval before importation of such products. However, the products should still be declared to the Customs and go through inspection and quarantine when entering the Country.
Announcement of State Administration of Market Regulation and General Administration of Customs on the Implementation of the Annual Report Submission Reform (Announcement  No. 9)
State Administration of Market Regulation and General Administration of Customs decided that the annual report submission reform will be adopted from the 2017 annual report. Customs declaration entities (consignee and consigner of import and export cargo, Customs declaration agents) and processing and production companies (including individual-owned business and rural cooperatives) registered or filed at the Customs should submit annual reports through National Enterprise Credit Information Publicity System (www.gsxt.gov.cn, the “Publicity System”). In addition, for import cargo with tax relief still subject to customs supervision, companies should submit the Cargo with Tax Relief Use Status Report to the Customs through China Electronic Port QP pre-input user end tax relief declaration system for the year 2017. From 2018, all annual reports should be submitted through the Publicity System. From 2018, the period for the submission of annual reports to the Customs is 1 January to 30 June. Companies failing to submit their annual reports as required should be listed in the credit anomaly list and publicized.
Decision of General Administration of Customs on the Revision of Certain Regulations (GAC Decree No. 240)
Decision of General Administration of Customs on the Abolishment of Certain Regulations (GAC Decree No. 241)
Under the State Council’s decision to deepen the Fang Guan Fu reform, in order to streamline the customs procedures, GAC decided that from 1 July 2018, 82 regulations including Administrative Rules of the Customs of PRC for Articles Entering and Leaving China of Foreign Mountaineering Groups and Individuals will be revised; from 29 May 2018, Administrative Rules for Export Rebates Customs Declaration Form issued by GAC Decree No. 16 on 6 March 1991 and Rules for Management of Inspection and Quarantine Marks for Inbound and Outbound Cargo issued by CIQ Decree No. 23 on 31 May 2000 will be abolished.
For more information, please kindly refer to:
Local Customs Regulation Update
Announcement of Shanghai Customs on the Adjustment of Immediate Levy and Refund Operating Procedures for Value Added Tax on Import of Diamond Products (Shanghai Customs Announcement  No. 4)
The Beijing Municipal Commission of Commerce, the Tianjin Port Service Office, Beijing Customs, Tianjin Customs, the Beijing Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau and the Tianjin Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau jointly released some specific measures to further optimize cross-border trade in Beijing and Tianjin. Specific measures include: optimization of customs declaration and inspection process, facilitation of the document handling process, promotion of paperless declaration, promotion and application of "single window" for international trade, establishment and publication of expense list etc., totalling 16 measures.
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