1. Important: Please read our guidelines and tips for new players before posting, particularly if this is your first time. If looking for answers, start with a search of past topics.

Air Freight import less than $1000 do I need a forwarder?

Discussion in 'Logistics' started by Rico, Jun 29, 2012.

  1. Rico

    Rico Active Member

    Messages:
    107
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Hi,

    I have a new supplier in North Sweden and I will be importing small packages (less than 10kgs, less than $1000 of value) 2-3 times a month. I am planning to use TNT or DHL for the service as my understanding is that they can look after the full operation, and they will charge me directly on my account.

    When I explained to my supplier that I was going to send my Express Currier they asked me the name of my forwarder. They explained that because goods are in a Customs warehouse my forwarder needs to provide them with a T1 document for the shipment.

    This is quite confusing, am I missing something? Or is the supplier in error?

    Thanks a lot,
    Rico
  2. Rico

    Rico Active Member

    Messages:
    107
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    28
    I tried to contact TNT with no success. Also a search online didn't give me a definitive answer. As usual this forum knowledge is my best chance :D
  3. KarenC

    KarenC Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,660
    Likes Received:
    610
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Have you tried sending via air post? (arriving via Australia Post) Our local post is very helpful. Have you tried having a chat at your local post office? They would know which form.

    From my understanding, customs will notice that you import a few times a month under $1000K and will then send you a customs tax bill. So make sure you account for those extra taxes when reselling.

    Someone else maybe able to help you more.

    Cheers.
  4. Rico

    Rico Active Member

    Messages:
    107
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Hi Karen,

    Thanks for your help. Sadly in this particular situation I will need to use an Express Currier, as I need the items to be fully trackable and i need to receive them as fast as possible.

    I will be importing 2-3 times a month to keep our stock levels low and our backorders under control, not to avoid the import duties. Sometimes the total value will be only 2-300 dollars, and the weight only 1 kg or less.

    What I really don't understand is what a Custom warehouse is and why I need a forwarder...
  5. KarenC

    KarenC Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,660
    Likes Received:
    610
    Trophy Points:
    113
    This page at Customs might help ...
    http://www.customs.gov.au/site/page6091.asp

    I understand that you need an Express Courier, but it seems that it would be good to talk to someone at Customs in Sydney.

    When the goods come into the country, they actually are stored at a 'warehouse' that you advise until Customs releases them to you after checking. So I think that's what they are referring to.

    Customs phone number is
    Enquiries


    • 1300 363 263
    • +61 2 9313 3010 (outside Australia)
    8am to 5pm (AEST) Monday to Fridays excluding national public holidays
    http://www.customs.gov.au/site/page5834.asp




    .
  6. Rico

    Rico Active Member

    Messages:
    107
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    28
    I am quite sure that the goods will not need to end up in a Australian custom warehouse as they are under $1000. I import from other suppliers larger quantities, and of course in that case I use a freight forwarder and we temporarily store the goods in a warehouse waiting to be cleared.

    My question is: why those goods are stored in a custom warehouse in the country of origin, and why do I need to provide a T1 document to free them?
  7. SourceSmart

    SourceSmart Member

    Messages:
    54
    Likes Received:
    17
    Trophy Points:
    8
    When i import smaller Qtys via air freight i just ask for ' door to door ' freight service. then you don't need any custom warehouse.
    Ask TNT for this .

    Hope this helps.

    Warren.
  8. Rico

    Rico Active Member

    Messages:
    107
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Hi Warren, thanks for your input. This is clear to me.

    The problem is that the sender needs a T1 model as Export document. ?i am happy to accept the goods directly but apparently there is some European export law that requires additional documents for the export. It is really confusing, but I would expect that TNT could sort it out, but the sender sent me some scansion of the export documents for the shipment, advising that my forwarder will need them to make the T1 document. TNT does not ask you to upload any such document when making an Express import booking...

    :confused:
  9. Divert To Mobile

    Divert To Mobile Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,633
    Likes Received:
    1,199
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Importing < $1000 means you don't need formal customs declarations and pay import duty - pretty cool

    BUT

    When I did my customs course they trainer advised that we wouldn't be the first to think of frequent shipments of less than 1k to avoid the above and that customs officials were wise to rules.
    Basically he said, do it too frequently and for too long and they'll get you for avoiding customs and back charge you.

    Not sure if it was lies to get us to use his company for forwarding but I'm rather confident they're not stupid.

    Steve
  10. Rico

    Rico Active Member

    Messages:
    107
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Hi Steve, thank you. But my imports will be less than $500 each on average, and I have genuine reasons to do it, nothing to do with avoiding custom duties. I would do the same even if there were custom duties involved.

    My problem is not in Australia, but in Sweden. I never heard about a T1 document, and I never heard of a custom warehouse for goods to be exported. My supplier is telling me that the goods are stored in a custom warehouse in Sweden and that they need to be cleared before leaving the country with a T1 document. I am not asking informations about Australian Custom, but Exports from Custom warehouses in the European Community using an Express Courrier like TNT.

    I would really appreciate some help in this :)
  11. Couple It

    Couple It Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,721
    Likes Received:
    1,156
    Trophy Points:
    113
    From the information on this site it appears that a T1 is only required when goods are moving from Sweden (and several other countries) to members of the European Union. It's a way of allowing goods to be transported within these member countries and only calculating duty and taxes at the customs clearance point.

    That's how I read it anyway. And I found this site with a simple Google search of "T1 Swedish customs".

    Wendy :)
  12. Rico

    Rico Active Member

    Messages:
    107
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Ok, I managed to sort this one out, and I'll report it here just in case anyone is interested.

    The T1 document applies for goods produced outside the European Union, but are actually physically present within the EU borders and have not yet been cleared or re-exported. These goods are not part of free trade.

    A T1 document is obligatory for shipping these not (yet) cleared goods within the EU.

    My particular goods would be in a Customs Warehouse as they are most probably manufactured outside of the EU.
    My supplier in Sweden probably imports them and then performs what is referred to as a Nature 30 import clearance. The goods are cleared into a bonded “customs warehouse” and not formally imported. No duty or taxes are paid.

    If the goods are re-exported then no duty or tax is ever paid as the goods have not become the commerce of the country.
    If my supplier needed some goods for their domestic sales in Sweden, then they would pay import duty/tax and release some item from the customs warehouse.

    I also find out that TNT cannot start a T1, but DHL can. The other solution is to use a local forwarder with an European representative.

    I hope this will help someone, as it was quite complicate to find all those informations. I have to thank my forwarder Damien from alphacargo.com.au in Cairns for his support.

Share This Page