What does customs clearance mean?


Industry Encyclopedia

Customs clearance means the process of obtaining permission from the relevant government agency to move goods out of a country (export) or to bring goods into that country (import). We can also define customs clearance as a document issued to the shipper by the customs authorities. This document usually indicates that the shipper has paid all customs duties and exported their goods for customs clearance.

To obtain this clearance document, your customs declaration document must be available, which lists the goods in your shipment, as well as the following documents on hand.

An import and export license allows you to transport your goods seamlessly across borders. As the name implies, an export license allows you to export goods, and whether you need an export license depends on the type of goods you are shipping. An import license will allow you to carry restricted goods, and you must apply to the licensing authority for both types of goods.

You send a pro forma invoice to the buyer after confirming the order. Since the pro forma invoice is an agreement between the two parties, some countries use it instead of a commercial invoice. Therefore, customs authorities use the information in the pro forma invoice to determine duties and taxes.

Customs packing list, which includes all items contained in your shipment. When it leaves the port, this list is included to help the shipping company track each item in your shipment.

Country of origin, a document issued by you stating where the goods you are shipping were manufactured, processed, or purchased.

Like a pro forma invoice, a commercial invoice links you to your buyer and provides proof of the transaction between the two parties. It contains the following information.