Laws of the People's Republic of China
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ON IMPORT AND EXPORT DUTIES OF
THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA
(Promulgated on March 7, 1985 by the State Council)
SUBJECT: CUSTOMS DUTIES
ISSUING-DEPT: STATE COUNCIL OF CHINA
LENGTH: 2494 words
CHAPTER I GENERAL PROVISIONS
[Article 1] The present Regulations are hereby formulated with a view to implementing the policy of opening up contacts with the outside world, bringing the tariff economic lever into full play and promoting the development of external economic relations, foreign trade and the national economy.
[Article 2] All goods permitted to be imported into or exported out of the People's Republic of China are subject to import or export duty to be collected by the Customs according to "The Customs Import and Export Tariff of the People's Republic of China" (hereinafter referred to as "Customs Import and Export Tariff"), unless otherwise provided for.
"Customs Import and Export Tariff" is an integral part of the present Regulations.
[Article 3] The Tariff Commission shall be responsible for the amendments of the "Customs Import and Export Tariff" and the establishment of temporary tariff rates and shall submit them to the State Council for approval and implementation.
The Tariff Commission is composed of representatives of the Customs General Administration, the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations and Trade, the Ministry of Finance, the State Planning Commission, the State Economic Commission and other relevant departments.
[Article 4] The consignee (or shipper) or his agent shall be held responsible for the payment of import (or export) duty.
[Article 5] Rules governing the levy of import duty on articles of passengers' baggage and personal postal items shall be formulated separately.
CHAPTER II THE APPLICATION OF TARIFF RATES
[Article 6] The tariff rates for imports fall into two categories: general tariff rates and minimum tariff rates. The general tariff rates apply to imports originating in the countries with which the People's Republic of China has not concluded trade treaties or agreements containing reciprocal favourable tariff clauses; the minimum tariff rates apply to imports originating in the countries with which the People's Republic of China has concluded trade treaties or agreements containing reciprocal favourable tariff clauses therein.
[Article 7] No export duty shall be levied on the export items against which export duty rates are not specified in the "Customs Import and Export Tariff".
[Article 8] Customs duties shall be levied on imports or exports at the tariff rates in force on the date of application by the consignee (or shipper) or his agent.
Imports for which prior application has been granted permission by the Customs before their arrival, shall be charged import duties at the tariff rates in force on the date of entry of the relevant means of conveyance.
CHAPTER III ASSESSMENT OF THE DUTIABLE VALUE
[Article 9] The dutiable value of imports shall be calculated on the basis of the CIF value of the goods, which means the normal wholesale price prevailing at the place of purchase plus all charges incurred before discharge at the place of importation in China, such as packing charges, freight, insurance premiums, commissions, etc., all of which are to be scrutinized and determined by the Customs.
[Article 10] When the normal wholesale price of the imports prevailing at the place of purchase cannot be ascertained by the Customs, the dutiable value shall be assessed on the basis of the normal domestic wholesale price of similar goods at the place of importation prevailing at the time of application minus the import duty and product tax (or value added tax) paid at importation and normal freight, storage fees and other business expenses incurred after importation.
When the normal domestic wholesale price of similar goods cannot be ascertained, or the business transaction is of a special nature, the dutiable value shall be assessed by the Customs.
[Article 11] The dutiable value of machinery and appliances, means of conveyance and other goods, which have been sent abroad for repairs and re-imported, shall be assessed on the basis of the normal charges for repairs, materials or parts used, all of which shall be scrutinized and determined by the Customs, provided that such machinery and appliances, etc., were declared to the Customs at the time of exportation and re-imported within the prescribed time limit.
[Article 12] The dutiable value of goods sent abroad for processing shall be assessed on the basis of the difference between the CIF value of the processed goods and the CIF value of the original exports at the time of re-importation, provided that the goods sent for processing were declared to the Customs at the time of exportation and re-imported within the prescribed time limit.
[Article 13] The dutiable value of goods imported on lease (whether contractual or financial) shall be assessed by the Customs on the basis of the normal rent of the goods concerned.
[Article 14] The dutiable value of exports shall be calculated on the basis of the FOB value of the goods sold abroad less export duty, which shall be scrutinized and determined by the Customs.
[Article 15] The consignee (or shipper) or his agent shall, at the time of handing in an import (or export) application, produce simultaneously a bona fide invoice enumerated with such items as price, freight, insurance premiums and other expenses incurred for the goods (with manufacturers' invoices attached, if any), packing lists and other relevant documentation.
The above-mentioned invoices and documentation shall be certified as true and correct by the consignee (or shipper) or his agent.
[Article 16] In assessing the dutiable value of imports and exports, the Customs has the authority to accept or refuse the invoices, and other documentation produced by the consignee (or shipper) or his agent and, if necessary, to examine the relevant documents, contracts, accounts and bills of both the buyer and seller or make further investigations. The Customs may also check the accounts and bills of the goods concerned even after the release of the goods on payment of customs duty.
[Article 17] Where the consignee (or shipper) or his agent fails to produce the relevant documentation laid down in Article 15 at the time of handing in the application, the imports (or exports) shall be levied customs duty on the basis of the dutiable value assessed by the Customs. After the duty has been collected, the duty amount shall not be adjusted even though the relevant documentation has been subsequently produced to the Customs.
[Article 18] Where the CIF value and FOB value or rents for imports or exports are in terms of foreign currency, the amount shall be converted into renminbi at the buying and selling mid-rates quoted by the department in charge of exchange control in the "Schedule of Exchange Rate of Renminbi against Foreign Currencies" available to the Customs on the date of issue of the duty memorandum. Where the official exchange rate is not available, the Customs may use the exchange rate set by the above-mentioned department.
CHAPTER IV PAYMENT, REFUND OR RECOVERY OF CUSTOMS DUTY
[Article 19] The consignee (or shipper) or his agent shall pay customs duty at the designated bank within seven days (that is, excluding Sundays and official holidays, and the same below) from the date following the issue of the duty memorandum by the Customs, beyond which the Customs may, in addition to urging the consignee (or shipper) or his agent to pay the duty in time, charge an overdue fine at 0.1% of the total duty amount per day from the eighth day to the date of payment of duty.
[Article 20] The Customs shall levy customs duty and overdue fines in renminbi unless otherwise provided for.
[Article 21] The Customs shall issue receipts in the forms prescribed by the Customs General Administration for levying customs duty and overdue fines.
[Article 22] The consignee (or shipper) or his agent may, within a year from the date of payment of customs duty, apply for a refund by handing in to the Customs a written statement with details of the case and relevant duty memorandum attached, failing which his application for refund shall not be entertained under any of the following circumstances:
(a) Where duty has been overpaid on imports or exports as a result of wrong assessment by the Customs;
(b) Where the full amount of duty has been paid on cargo passed without Customs examination and subsequently found to have been short-landed and verified correct by the Customs;
(c) Where duty has been paid and released exports have not been shipped, owing to special reasons, and reported to the Customs as shut-out cargo and verified correct by the Customs.
[Article 23] Upon discovery of any duty being short-paid on imports or exports, the Customs may, within one year from the date of duty payment, recover the amount of duty short-paid from the consignee (or shipper) or his agent; if the duty was short-paid in breach of regulations, the amount short-paid may be recovered within three years.
CHAPTER V DUTY REDUCTION OR EXEMPTION AND THE APPROVAL PROCEDURE
[Article 24] The following goods may be exempted from customs duty upon verification by the Customs:
(a) Where the amount of duty to be paid for a consignment of goods comes below RMB 10;
(b) Where the advertising matters and trade samples are of no commercial value;
(c) Where goods are sent from abroad free of charge by international organizations or governments;
(d) Where native exports are returned from abroad for any justifiable reasons, if re-importation is applied for by the original shipper or his agent with supporting documentary evidence covering original export and verified true by the Customs, but the export duty already paid shall not be refunded;
(e) Where fuel, stores, beverages and provisions are loaded on the means of conveyance entering or leaving the country for use en route.
[Article 25] Under any of the following circumstances, the Customs may grant duty reductions or exemptions on imports at its discretion:
(a) Goods suffering damage or loss en route or at the time of discharge;
(b) Goods suffering damage or loss by force majeure after discharge but prior to Customs clearance;
(c) Goods found leaky, damaged or rotten at the time of Customs examination, such damage, etc., being through no fault in custody on the part of the warehouse-keeper or other persons concerned.
[Article 26] Trade samples, exhibits, engineering equipment and vehicles for construction, instruments and tools for installation, cinematographic and television apparatus, containers, theatrical costumes and props, which are permitted by the Customs to be temporarily imported (or temporarily exported) and guaranteed to be re-exported (or re-imported) within six months, shall be exempted from the payment of import (or export) duty.
The time limit prescribed above may be extended at the discretion of the Customs.
[Article 27] Raw materials, subsidiary materials, parts, accessories, components and packing materials, supplied by foreign enterprises for inward processing or assembling or brought from abroad to make goods for the foreign market, shall be exempted from import duty on the basis of the quantity of the material, parts, etc., actually used in the processing or assembling and re-exported.
[Article 28] Provisions governing duty collection or exemption for free replacement goods shall be formulated by the Customs General Administration separately.
[Article 29] Duty reduction or exemption shall be allowed in accordance with relevant laws and regulations, to goods imported into or exported from the special economic zones, to goods imported or exported by joint equity ventures, contractual joint ventures or enterprises using exclusive foreign investment and to goods entitled to enjoy preferential treatment under the relevant rules.
[Article 30] Where the consignee (or shipper) or his agent, for special reasons, has to apply for duty reduction or exemption, he shall, prior to the importation or exportation of the goods concerned, hand in to the local Customs a written application with reasons clearly stated and documentary evidence attached. After verification, the local Customs shall transmit the case to the Customs General Administration for approval in accordance with the relevant regulations. Applications with false reasons or without adequate documentary evidence shall not be entertained.
CHAPTER VI APPEAL PROCEDURE
[Article 31] If the consignee (or shipper) or his agent disagrees with the classification and dutiable value under the "Customs Import and Export Tariff", he shall pay the duty first and lodge with the Customs an appeal in writing within 14 days (that is, excluding Sundays and official holidays) from the date following the issue of the duty memorandum. Any appeal not lodged within the prescribed time limit shall not be entertained.
[Article 32] On receipt of the above-mentioned appeal, the Customs concerned shall, within seven days, reconsider the case in question and may modify the original decision. If, however, the original decision is sustained, the Customs concerned shall transmit the appeal together with their comments to the Customs General Administration for consideration within 14 days of receipt of the appeal.
If the consignee (or shipper) or his agent is still dissatisfied with the modified decision, he may lodge a second appeal within seven days from the date of receipt of the notification of the modified decision. The Customs shall transmit the second appeal within seven days from the date of receipt of the appeal together with their comments to the Customs General Administration for consideration.
[Article 33] On receipt of the appeal or the second appeal, the Customs General Administration shall, except in special circumstances, scrutinize the case, reach a decision and issue a written notification of the decision within 14 days which shall be communicated to the appellant through the Customs concerned. If the notification cannot be delivered, a public notice shall be posted at the Customs concerned.
CHAPTER VII PENALTIES
[Article 34] Any act violating the present Regulations shall be dealt with in accordance with the Customs Law and other relevant regulations.
CHAPTER VIII SUPPLEMENTARY PROVISIONS
[Article 35] All individuals have the right to expose or report any activities of duty evasion. The Customs shall issue rewards to the persons concerned and maintain confidentiality after the matter has been verified and dealt with accordingly.
[Article 36] The Customs General Administration is authorized to interpret the present Regulations.
[Article 37] The present Regulations shall come into force on March 1985.