If you’re thinking about Australia Importation Business, you’ve come to the right place! It can be confusing at first to find all the information you need to start your business, so we’ve done all the hard work for you in this guide.
We’ll walk you through each step in the process of importing goods into Australia, from finding out if it’s even legal and profitable, to choosing an appropriate shipping service, to understanding how the process will affect your finances, and more!
Australian Importation Business
The process of importing goods into Australia can be a daunting task, but with careful planning and execution, it can be a successful endeavor.
Here are steps to take when importing goods into Australia:
Make sure you’re aware of importing laws and government regulations
Before you start importing goods into Australia, it’s important that you’re aware of the relevant laws and regulations.
The Australian Border Force (ABF) is responsible for enforcing these laws, and you can be fined or even jailed if you don’t comply. Here are some of the things you need to keep in mind
- Most food imports will require an import permit from the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources
- You must pay duty on imported items over $1,000 AUD in value
- There are certain items prohibited from being imported at all, such as firearms and pornographic material
- If you plan on exporting products to other countries once they’ve been imported into Australia, make sure they’re not a prohibited item under Foreign Affairs guidelines before shipping them out.
- Packages sent to Australia by air freight should arrive within six days while those sent by sea freight may take up to four weeks to arrive.
- In order for your shipment to pass through customs smoothly, ensure you have a valid export declaration number before sending anything off! It also helps to know what documents might be required depending on the nature of your product: Is it a gift? A sample? What materials are used? How much does it weigh? All this information helps determine what type of paperwork you’ll need to submit.
Find Out If You Need a Specific Permit
Depending on what you’re importing, you may need to apply for a permit before sending your goods overseas.
You can check with the Australian Border Force to see if you need a permit. The process is relatively simple and straightforward, but it’s important to make sure you have all the necessary documentation before getting started.
First, find out whether or not you need a permit; second, research what type of document will be required for your specific situation; third, gather any other supporting documents that are required by customs; fourth, pack everything up securely and send it off!
Here’s what you’ll need: A completed application form – Some permits require a unique application form while others use an existing one.
Documentation – If you’re applying for an import permit, some applicants must provide certain supporting documents such as bank statements or business records. Money – The fees vary depending on the size and value of your shipment.
It ranges from $0 to $50 per kilogram depending on where it’s coming from. Make sure you include this in your budget so you don’t get hit with any surprises at the end. Once you’ve applied for your permit, wait 10-14 days (or more) to hear back about whether or not your request has been approved.
If it has been approved, then congratulations! Now it’s time to move on to customs clearance. Customs clearance is another tricky topic that requires its own guide which we’ll talk about in detail later on in this series.
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Learn if your goods will need to be quarantined
Before you import goods into Australia, you need to find out if they will need to be quarantined. The Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment’s BiosecurityImport Conditions system (BICON) will help you determine this.
In most cases, any food items imported into Australia must have a permit from AQIS before they can enter the country. Contact your nearest AQIS office for more information on importing food items into Australia. You may also have to have a permit from one or more state or territory governments – contact them for information on their biosecurity requirements before importing any goods.
Learn about the tariffs and taxes you’ll need to pay
When importing goods into Australia, you’ll need to be aware of the various tariffs and taxes that may apply. The type of goods you’re importing, as well as the country they’re coming from, will affect the amount of duty you need to pay.
GST is also payable on most imports, so it’s important to factor this in when budgeting for your shipment. To avoid surprises, speak with a customs broker before you import goods. If customs determines that any duties or taxes are owed, they can seize the shipment until these are paid. They will then advise the shipper of how much needs to be paid. Tariffs vary by type of goods and whether or not they originate from a particular country.
For example, if an Australian company exports steel to Japan, there would be no tariff applied because Japan doesn’t have one on steel. If the same company exported steel to China, however, there would be a 3% tariff levied because China has one on steel imports.
Understand the charges for import duty, and goods and services sales tax
When you import goods into Australia, you’ll need to pay import duty on them.
The amount of duty you’ll pay depends on the type of goods you’re importing and their value. You’ll also need to pay goods and services sales tax (GST) on the value of the imported goods unless they’re exempt or eligible for a concession.
For example, there are some items that are zero-rated and don’t attract GST, such as books. There are also other items that are GST-free including fresh food, health aids, education materials, some clothing and footwear.
If you’re importing items worth more than $1 million AUD or if you intend to sell the goods in Australia then your imports will be subject to an even higher rate of import duty called luxury car imports or LCT.
Your shipment may also be subject to customs processing fees which vary according to the total value of the goods being imported and any associated insurance costs. Be aware that if your shipment is delayed at customs, this can incur storage charges so it’s important not to wait until the last minute before arranging transport for your shipment.
Take advantage of any concessions
Depending on the type of goods you’re importing, you may be eligible for certain concessions. For example, if you’re importing books, you may be able to take advantage of the reduced GST rate. Knowing what concessions are available to you can help you save money on your importation costs.
To find out more about the concessions that apply to your product, click here.
What types of goods will I need for an import license? You’ll need an import license if you want to bring in specific types of items into Australia such as firearms and fireworks (though this doesn’t include matches).
If in doubt, contact Australian Customs and Border Protection Service. What’s involved in applying for an import license?
Understand free trade agreements (FTAs)
FTAs are important because they can provide preferential treatment when it comes to tariffs and other trade barriers. When importing goods into Australia, you should check to see if there is an FTA in place between your country and Australia. If there is, you may be able to benefit from reduced tariffs or other trade barriers.
If not, you may need to contact the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade for more information on how the importation process will work.
You should also consider whether any of the items that you wish to import require a permit or license under another Australian law (for example, firearms).
There are some types of products which cannot be imported at all. For Example, animal or plant materials include ivory; protected wildlife; native plants; manufactured foodstuffs containing animal products; dog meat and kangaroo meat.
For imports worth less than A$1,000 AUD, you do not need to get customs clearance before bringing them into Australia (provided the value does not exceed A$10,000) but you still have to declare the goods.
Once you have declared the goods, Customs may ask questions about their origin and what they are being used for.
Find out about other costs
Before you start importing goods into Australia, it’s important to be aware of the other costs involved in the process. These can include things like transport costs, customs duties and taxes, insurance, and quarantine fees.
By knowing about these costs upfront, you can budget for them and avoid any nasty surprises down the track. The cost will depend on where your products are coming from and what they are made of, so make sure you get a quote from an international freight forwarder before getting started.
It is important to have a trade account with an Australian importer or distributor before importing goods into Australia. If your products are not imported by an Australian importer or distributor then the importer will need a Customs import license – but this is only if they plan on selling it themselves.
There are also different requirements if the product is classified as foodstuffs or pharmaceuticals.
Make sure you research your requirements beforehand and work out how much time it will take to import goods into Australia. Keep in mind that some shipping companies will charge additional costs for ‘warehousing’ goods at their destination port until an order arrives, so always clarify up front how much these charges are likely to be. Plus there’s the possibility that you’ll need customs clearance at your destination port – which could lead to delays and add another cost to your bill.
Make sure your goods are labeled accurately
All goods imported into Australia must be labeled with the country of origin, as well as a list of ingredients if the goods are food items.
This is to ensure that consumers are able to make informed choices about the products they purchase. Additionally, all packaging must be in English.
If it is not, you will need to include an Information for Consumers leaflet inside each package.
If your products are plant-based and have not been treated with chemicals or preservatives, there may be some exceptions for labeling requirements.
When importing new types of goods (e.g., electronic devices), you will need a permit from the
Department of Industry, Innovation and Science prior to importing your product; this includes laptop computers, mobile phones and tablets.