Third party exporting


We are based in Mid Wales. We need to despatch goods manufactured for us in China direct to Australia. What paperwork do we need and are there any regulations we should be aware of?

Further to my question on the above, the goods we are exporting are moving and handling equipment to raise fallen but uninjured clients including bariatric clients.


Hi Debbie,

Invoice, packing list, certificate of origin are the standard documents. If you can provide the Customs Tariff commodity Code I can check the duty rates and make sure the goods are not subject to quota / import licencing in Australia.

Kind regards,



Hi Debbie,

Thanks for posting your question.

The answer to both parts of your question will depend to a certain extent on the nature, value and weight of the goods to be shipped.

As Sean mentions in a previous reply, there are standard documents that will be required (a good in-market partner would be able to help with the exact requirements), but you will need to also be aware of Australian rules on importation of goods. Again, Sean mentions import duty rates and possible quotas or licence requirements, but I understand that Australian Customs carry out random examinations of entries to the country, which can cause delays in getting the products through – there could be other things to consider.

I see that you are based in Wales and have already been in contact with some of my colleagues. If you’d like someone to look into this further, please get in touch and I’ll see what I can arrange.

Kind regards.



Hi Debbie – please be careful with third party exporting. The main issues that can trip up companies are the shipping terms (Incoterms) you use and also valuation. You must decide who is going to be the exporter from China and the importer into Australia – if you are thinking of using either ExWorks or DDP in either contract don’t (and do bear in mind you have two contracts here). ExW from China would make you the legal exporter and DDP into Australia would mean you would have to have a registered presence in Australia.

Valuation – the invoice that is used to clear the goods into Australia must show the value you are receiving (the true transaction) price not the price you are paying the Chinese for the goods. If you don’t want the China supplier to know your price to Australia you will need to use a trusted freight company to swap the Chinese supplier’s paperwork for yours before the goods are declared to Australian customs. Of course, there is always the chance your customer will still see the Chinese supplier’s paperwork – only you know what commercial problems this could bring.

Finally, China/ Australia have a preferential trade agreement so, depending on the goods involved, the Australian importing may be able to claim a reduced (even zero) import duty. You need to investigate this by finding the commodity code and checking the Australia tariff.

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