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Rules on importing goods

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andrea51
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Rules on importing goods

Postby andrea51 » Wed, 14 Oct 2009 10:59 pm

I'll be starting a small online business soon. I'll be selling mostly bags for ladies. I've gone throught the ACRA website a few times already.. that part is fine. But what I'm totally confused about is the whole customs and tradenet thing. I'm starting quite small really and expecting to bring in 60-70kg of goods in a month. I have 3 different suppliers who have their own preferred methods of sending their stuff to me. (e.g. one prefers TNT while the other DPEX).

What I'm not clear about is:

The website states I have to sign up for a Tradenet login or something or I have to get a logistics/freight company to do all the paperwork for me. Do I still have to do this considering that my suppliers already have their own couriers?

Have been rereading their site for days but still unclear about this.. all the FAQs are actually for big time importers and use too much jargon..

Any info and/or advice would be great!

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Postby brittanny » Thu, 15 Oct 2009 8:59 am


andrea51
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Postby andrea51 » Thu, 15 Oct 2009 9:36 am

yes i have gone through this page many times already. was hoping someone out there can share some insights based on actual experience. then i guess i'll have to find out and see for myself then.

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Postby brittanny » Thu, 15 Oct 2009 10:06 am

hi i dont have actual experience but since u would like to DIY and just need help on documentation mayb u should make some calls to a few TradeNet® Service Centres ?

http://www.business.gov.sg/EN/BusinessT ... reight.htm

u may find the list of service centres given in the last heading, link no. 2

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ksl
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Postby ksl » Thu, 15 Oct 2009 1:12 pm

If your supplier is sending the goods over, you have probably paid him for the shipment, so you will just pay the GST when the goods arrive. That is to say they will not be released to you until the GST is paid.

If you purchase FOB, which means Free On Board, you have to do the rest, pay fro transportation, insurance and customs clearance or you can set up an account with a freight forwarder, and they will do the customs clearance.

You will have GST to pay, and if you want to be fully legal, you should check if you need an import licence and check the goods for any illegal restrictions, this may relate to the materials the bags are made of.

It's important to see if bags are under the control of permits, check what is permitted and what is not, skins like leathers may require a permit, i don't know.

This link will take you step by step, if you have any questions let me know.
http://www.business.gov.sg/EN/BusinessT ... import.htm

I would think certain skins of animals will be banned for example. It is your responsibility as the importer to ensure you run your business in accordance with the laws of Singapore under the health & safety act.

Though the food industry is more strict for obvious reasons, ignorance of the laws is not an excuse, though I get the impression in Singapore that the majority of companies, are not legally covered in what they do and they don't care.

Tradenet you can use if you are importing or re-exporting I believe, though for your needs, I would just use it to collect information, to get a better understanding of import & export.

Your first step would be to understand your product, specifications and materials, and check if they are on the list of controlled products, skins of animals may well be, if unsure, you can take the handbag made of skin, to be checked with AVA, they can advise you....

I honestly don't believe any of the handbags being sold in Singapore are taken or tested by the importers, the health & safety risk is what you need to think about, if the goods are coming from a risk Country.

So basically if you have doubts, then get them tested with AVA. or the designated authority, always keep in mind, that you as the importer have the responsibility to the public.

Manufactures know its not their responsibility and will do anything as cheap as possible to produce goods and make money. It's your investment in the goods, you will lose if anything goes wrong, so it's always better to follow the procedures in place to be safe, especially importing food.

1. Country Risk for doing Business for import. Policy and guarantees for defects, solving the returns procedure for defects, normally you can negociate into your buying price. Or get full support.

2. Import restrictions = Technical hindrances in destination Country, health risks and hazards, taxes, duties if applicable and any other government hindrance in place, like restriction on quota's

3. Method of payment and security of payment...irreversible letter of credit is best, if you feel insecure with dealing with suppliers. Talk with bank for a good, safest deal.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Thu, 15 Oct 2009 2:21 pm

One learns something new everyday. For the past 40 years I've been told FOB meant Freight on Board. Now I learn that I can ship crates of booze in and as long as I go on board and drink it, it's free on board? Hot Damn! I'm gonna go back to maritime industries!

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Postby ksl » Thu, 15 Oct 2009 2:36 pm

sundaymorningstaple wrote:One learns something new everyday. For the past 40 years I've been told FOB meant Freight on Board. Now I learn that I can ship crates of booze in and as long as I go on board and drink it, it's free on board? Hot Damn! I'm gonna go back to maritime industries!
Ha ha! Yes many people do also say freight on board, though the right term is free on board. Which means that once the goods are delivered and loaded, the expense and risk, is passed from the seller to the buyer, not the captain of the ship Booze, you can't pay duty or GST if there is none left. :lol:

This is why cost, insurance & freight is the best if it is cheaper to arrange in the sellers Country. So the ships crew don't drink the beer! :wink:

A glossary of terms in export & import, comes in handy for the new importer

http://www.seda-cog.org/export/cwp/view ... ortNav=%7C

International contracts and commercial law standards

http://www.iccwbo.org/incoterms/id3045/index.html

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Postby Oriental » Fri, 16 Oct 2009 7:15 pm

Hi andrea51,

It's pretty simple really. As long as you use courier service then they will do the custom clearance and charge you on delivery.

Depending on the value of the good you import and if it’s all for export, I would register for GST in order to claim back any GST paid.
Impossible is nothing!

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freight assistance

Postby rippingale » Wed, 21 Oct 2009 11:28 pm

Hi Andrea51,

I work in the freight forwarding industry and can lean you any advice you need in regards to importing/exporting all commodities into Singapore.
As an expan i have been in singapore about a year now and have many years expirence with cargo.

If your bringing in around 50-100kg i wouldnt suggest using a courier service as if your are buying under FOB terms you would be awaiting a big freight bill every shipment as well as a bill for the 7% GST that is applicable for all imports into Singapore (without those with exemptions)

For this sort of weight you should consider airfreight where you are likely to save some money. But being hanfbags your problem is volume. (in freight terms your cargo takes up more space than it weighs) so the most cost effective use would be LCL (less than a container load) seafreight. Where you can pay on a per pallet / m3 basis.

As for the inco terms each term (FOB/CFR/CIF/DDU/DDP) all come with pros and cons. Below is a lamens terms definition as I know some people get confused with them.
eg:
FOB - Free on board - you are liable for the freight, insurance, local costs in Singapore
CFR - Cost & Freight - your shipper pays the freight , you are liable for insurance and local costs in Singapore
CIF - Cost & Freight & Insurance - as per CFR except insurance is paid by your supplier
DDU - this is normal terms sent via a courier - you are only liable for the GST which will need to be paid in full prior to delivery, all else is payable by the supplier.
DDP - as per DDU but all charges are for account of the supplier

hope this helps if you need any further clarification pm me and ill be happy to answer any questions you may have.
"Singapore where its ok to be young, free, foreign, single and searching for a good good time"


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