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Australia: Post-import adjustments, determining customs value of imported goods

Australia: Post-import adjustments

For December year-end businesses, it is time to determine what payments need to be included in the customs value of imported goods and to meet all of the Australian Taxation Office’s strict deadlines and requirements under the Australian customs laws.


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The Department of Home Affairs, through its enforcement agency, Australian Border Force (Customs), has recently re-issued its guidance on the voluntary disclosure of post-importation adjustments. Customs has reiterated that an obligation arises on an importer to disclose any goods-related transfer pricing adjustments as soon as the importer becomes aware of them, and in line with financial reporting obligations.

Under Australian customs law, it is also a legal requirement to disclose certain other payments/costs that are not included in the customs value of the goods at the time of importation. These may include, but are not limited to:

  • Royalties and license fees
  • Research and development costs
  • Certain commissions
  • Proceeds of reselling the goods
  • Any other goods related payments

Disclosures are required whether there is an upward or downward adjustment to the price of the goods, and whether or not there is a change in the customs duty liability, including where goods are duty free.

Under Australia’s customs self-assessment regime, it is incumbent on importers to determine what payments are required to be included in the customs value (either at the time of importation or when those payments arise). Non-disclosure of adjustments to the price of the goods can result in infringement notices and penalties being issued.

Read an October 2019 report prepared by the KPMG member firm in Australia

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