Import-Export Procedures in Cambodia: Best Practices

Import-Export Procedures in Cambodia: Best Practices

Cambodia shares its borders with Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand, and is strategically positioned within South East Asia. The top export destinations for this country include the UK, the USA, Japan, and Germany, while their major import destinations are Vietnam, Thailand, and China. Moreover, several goods shipped through Southeast Asia tend to go through Cambodia to reach their ultimate destination.

Over the last few years, Cambodia has made considerable progress in regards to developing and modernizing its import and export process, as well as the transit operations. They have tried to streamline and harmonize the customs process with the usage of certain international standards. The Cambodian government has additionally encouraged the usage of SAD or the single administrative document system to facilitate better trade and risk management. As a result, there is just a single inspection done by the inter-ministerial joint body under this one-stop-service mechanism that is meant to streamline the customs processes while reducing bureaucracy and paperwork needs. 

Here are a few of the best practices involved in export and import shipment procedure in Cambodia:

● Registration: Exporters and importers are both required to get registered with the Department of Business Registration of Cambodia. The Automated System for Customs Data created under the UN Conference on Trade and Development is used by the country. To register, the importer and exporter shall need a TIN or Taxpayer Identification Number. These parties have to get registered with the General Department of Taxation, under the Ministry of Economy and Finance, to acquire the TIN. After doing so, they have to get registered with the General Department of Customs and Excise, as well as go ahead register their VAT accounts with the General Department of Taxation (Ministry of Economy and Finance).

The importers and exporters operating out of SEZ or Special Economic Zones additionally have to give an application to the Free Zone Management Department.

● Documents: Both importers and exporters need certain important documents to get through the process. The documents for exports and import purchase procedure ideally include:

✔ Customs Import Declaration;

✔ Commercial Invoice;

✔ Packing List

✔ Road Transport Document or Bill of Lading

✔ Import Permit

✔ Insurance Certificate

✔ Tax Certificate

✔ Certificate of Origin

✔ Company Registration

● For goods in transit: An import declaration under the transit regime of the country has to be provided for the goods passing through Cambodia before reaching their destination. Certain vital documents shall be needed for this, such as the Commercial Invoice, Packing list, Certificate of Insurance, and Certificate of Origin. While transitory goods do not incur import tariffs, typically, a letter of guarantee or a check issued by a bank is needed to be provided as security.

● Tariffs and Taxes: The 8-digit Harmonized System (HS) Code under the WCO or World Customs Organization is followed by Cambodia. The tariff classifications of this nation abide by the Harmonized Tariff Nomenclature and Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Cambodia applies tariff rates between 0 and 35 % for importers, while the export tax on goods leaving the country ranges from 0 to 50%. They charge a flat 10% VAT on all imported goods, while a special tax is levied on particularly imported goods.

● Cambodia has 14 SEZs till now, and businesses operating from there can import production equipment and raw material without having to pay import duties. They are exempted from VAT on both imports and exports as well.

The overall competency of the customs clearance procedure in Colombia majorly depends on the presentation of the valid documents, the accuracy of the details and information provided in the documents, the speed of the submission of documents, as well as filing the needed applications for the clearance. Broadly speaking, Colombia has three phases concerning both import and export. The first stage is to acquire the permit and license. The second would be to present the needed documentation, and ultimately comes the customs clearance stage. 

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