Import Documentation Requirement For Customs Clearance


When you import to Australia, the documents provided to the freight forwarder are essential. The complete and correct documents can determine the speed of your goods through the intended destination and can even affect the shipping cost.

1. Commercial Invoice

A commercial invoice is a primary document required for product identification, customs valuation and Duty determination. The commercial invoice identifies the sales transaction of the goods between the buyer and the seller, contains the commercial value for the goods from the supplier and the currency invoiced for the goods.

2. Packing List

The Packing list will detail the contents of the goods ordered between the seller and buyer and includes the shipment marks and numbers. The packing list must be presented on the seller’s letterhead and required to detail how the goods are packed e.g. 4 cartons onto 1 pallet.

3. Packing Declaration

The packing declaration is a mandatory document that is used to inform The Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (DAWE) of the type of packing material used. A signed packing declaration for LCL/FCL ocean freight consignments is required to be completed on supplier/packing company’s letterhead which includes company name and business address. The packing declaration must contain a numerical link between the shipment including Bill of Lading number, or container number, and must be signed, stamped and dated.

4. Bill of Lading

The Bill of Lading document is the title contract of carriage between the shipper and consignee. The bill of lading is prepared and only signed once the goods have been shipped from the port of loading. The carrier/shipper are instructed to provide the bill of lading once the goods have been paid in full as per the terms of the contract.

All ocean freight shipments less than container load and full container load (LCL and FCL) require an original Bill of Lading to be lodged with Freight Mart International, or a telex release to be arranged and lodged by the supplier before cargo can be released and or delivered.

5. Fumigation / Fumigation Certificate

Fumigation is required for wood and wood products before importation to Australia. Fumigation may also be required as directed by the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (DAWE) to protect against high risk pests from target specific regions and/or seasons.

If your consignment has been fumigated at origin, the fumigation certificate will need to be provided with all documents for customs clearance. Please be advised that some overseas fumigation companies are not accepted by Australia Quarantine authorities please refer to the website below.

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6. Free Trade Agreement and Certificate Of Origin (if applicable)

A free trade agreement (FTA) is an international treaty between two or more economies that reduces or eliminates certain barriers to trade in goods and services, as well as investment. Australia negotiates FTAs to benefit Australian exporters, importers, producers and investors by reducing and eliminating certain barriers to international trade and investment.

A certificate of origin (CO) is a document declaring in which country a commodity or good was manufactured. The certificate of origin contains information regarding the product, its destination, and the country of export. For example, a good may be marked “Made in the USA” or “Made in China”.

Required by many treaty agreements for cross-border trade, the certificate of origin is an important document because it can help determine whether certain goods are eligible for import, or whether goods are subject to duties.

Comments (3)

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