10 Shipping Tips for Small Businesses

Shipping is a crucial aspect of any small business that deals in physical products. This is regardless of whether you’re sending a batch of handcrafted furniture to a boutique overseas or delivering custom tiles to a residential project across town. When you better understand the nuances of shipping, it can save you time, money, and stress.

Streamline your business and learn the 10 essential shipping tips for small businesses, particularly those catering to homeowners and builders worldwide.

shipping strategy

Shipping tips for small businesses

For many businesses whose services may revolve around small products and documents, timely delivery ensures customer satisfaction and business success. Reasons such as these often highlight the complex shipping industry whose logistics requires strategic planning and reliable partners. Small businesses need to learn key considerations and strategies for their businesses and in shipping their goods effectively.

1. Understand Your Shipping Needs

The best way to start your shipping business first starts with assessing your shipping needs. Are your products fragile? Do they require special conditions like temperature control? Understanding these needs will help you choose the right carrier and packaging, ensuring that your goods arrive in top condition.

2. Choose the Right Packaging

The right packaging does more than protect your product—it can also reduce shipping costs. Invest in quality materials and consider custom-sized boxes to avoid paying for extra weight or space. For fragile items, ample padding is non-negotiable. Remember, the first impression matters when your product reaches your customer’s doorstep.

3. Leverage Technology

Use technology to streamline your shipping process. Many software solutions can help you manage orders, track shipments, and update customers in real-time. This not only improves efficiency but also enhances customer satisfaction with up-to-date information at their fingertips.

4. Know the Regulations

Shipping across borders? Build a shipping strategy. Make sure you understand the customs regulations of both the sending and receiving countries. Non-compliance can result in delays, fines, or even seized shipments. Always include the necessary documentation and consider consulting a customs expert if you frequently ship internationally.

5. Optimize for Cost-Effective Shipping

Explore different carriers and compare their rates and services. Don’t just stick to one—sometimes, a mix of carriers can offer the best bang for your buck depending on the destination and speed required. Also, consider offering free shipping thresholds to increase customer orders while managing costs effectively.

6. Build Strong Relationships with Carriers

Good relationships with your logistics providers can lead to better rates, priority services, and inside information on the best shipping practices. Regularly meet with your carriers, understand their challenges, and work together to find solutions that benefit both parties.

7. Plan for Peak Seasons

For businesses involved in construction and home improvement, peak seasons can mean a surge in demand. Prepare for these times with adequate stock, extra packaging materials, and perhaps even temporary additional help to manage orders. Advance planning prevents last-minute chaos and shipping delays.

8. Consider Insurance

Shipping insurance might seem like an unnecessary expense, but it can be a lifesaver for high-value products. Determine the cost-benefit ratio of insuring your goods, especially for international shipments that are more prone to risks.

9. Focus on Customer Service

Shipping is a part of your customer service. Transparent communication about shipping times, costs, and policies can help set realistic expectations. Also, be ready to handle shipping issues swiftly—how you manage problems can significantly impact your business reputation.

10. Regularly Review and Adjust

Shipping is not a set-it-and-forget-it part of your business. Regularly review your processes, carrier performance, and customer feedback. Stay flexible and ready to adjust to new challenges, whether they’re changes in shipping regulations or shifts in customer preferences.

By implementing these shipping tips, small businesses can improve their operations and customer satisfaction simultaneously. Whatever your business niche be, a local artisan or a small enterprise aiming to expand internationally, effective shipping strategies are key to success.

Learn more by reading these related article:

How to Mitigate Currency Fluctuation Risks When Shipping

The importance of Sustainability in the Shipping Sector

How Does the Israel War Affect Global Logistics and Freight Forwarding?

The ongoing war between Israel and Palestine has caused suffering and political instability among citizens. It has also disrupted the operations of the logistics industry, affecting different modes of transportation like air, sea, and land vehicles.

Moreover, the Israel-Hamas conflict that has led to a humanitarian crisis has also affected the supply chains of various sectors like electronics, defense, healthcare, and agriculture.

Disruptions to Transportation Routes of the Global Logistics Industry

The Israel-Palestine conflict continues to unfold in a geographically strategic location with numerous major seaports, airports, and land transit routes that can affect the operations of a logistics company in the Philippines. This conflict has led to severe disruptions in transportation routes and has significantly slowed down the flow of goods in the global supply chains, causing substantial delays in international deliveries.

Increased Insurance and Transportation Costs

The ongoing instability in Israel could potentially result in increased insurance costs for various goods transported in the region. Global logistics companies must carefully consider this factor when pricing international air freight forwarders. The resultant increase in cost could impose a significant financial burden on both companies and end consumers.

Reassessing Current Operations of the Maritime Shipping Industry

The Israel and Palestine conflict has also led the maritime industry to rethink its current operations. The maritime trade route through the Suez Canal for transporting goods between Europe and Asia passes through the Middle East. Any disturbances around the area, such as the Israel-Palestine war, can negatively impact shipping schedules and create bottlenecks in the global supply chain.

Given the current situation, maritime experts are actively monitoring the developments. It is crucial for the maritime shipping industry to promptly adjust its current routes and schedules to mitigate potential risks, underlining the urgency of the situation.

Negative Impact on Global Demand Supply Balance

The disruption of different transportation modes has also negatively affected the supply chains of various sectors that rely on Israel’s production and consumption. One of the affected sectors is electronics, as Israel is known as a major supplier of computer processors and telecommunications equipment in Europe and other markets.

The ongoing war has disrupted the production and delivery of various products. This disruption can affect the global trade demand and supply balance.

Moreover, Israel is prominent for being a leading supplier of military equipment and technology to countries like India, Singapore, Azerbaijan, and Colombia. The ongoing war has increased the demand for these products, but there is also a reduced capacity to fulfill this demand.

Renegotiation of Contracts and Current Supplier Relationships

Another major effect of the ongoing conflict in Israel is the renegotiation of contracts with partners and suppliers. This adjustment can be challenging, but for suppliers and logistics companies, it can be a way to meet new challenges and address uncertainties related to the conflict in Israel. This move will require more effort and flexibility to adapt to a rapidly evolving situation.


The war in Israel has a big impact on the global logistics industry as it generates disruptions in transportation routes, cost increases, and challenges in managing global supply chains. Logistics companies must be prepared to adapt to changing circumstances. Diversification and risk management are crucial for logistics companies to continue operations despite the challenges.

To learn more about the logistics industry, read these informative articles from Excelsior:

Tips when Working with a Freight Forwarder

How Currency Exchange Affects Freight Forwarding Costs

How Different Conflicts Affect the Global Shipping Industry?

Exploring All Modes of Freight Transportation for 2024

In the global business landscape, the challenges of transporting goods have evolved through innovation, effectiveness, and adaptability, giving rise to a robust industry. Logistics corridors no longer follow the straight lines of the past; rather, they span the boundaries of technology, sustainability, and creativity. This year of 2024, check out the various modes transportation in an international freight forwarding company that bring a distinctive level of service in the freight forwarding industry and how it help meet the growing need for better logistics.

Here is are the possible best modes of freight transportation that will continue to shape the industry’s future because of new emerging technologies.

Traditional Modes of Freight Transportation

Trucking: The backbone of freight transportation continues to be trucking, but with technological advancements. Autonomous trucks and platooning are becoming more prevalent, promising increased efficiency and reduced operational costs.

Rail Freight: With high capacity and eco-friendly advantages, rail freight is experiencing a resurgence. Innovative technologies, such as precision scheduled railroading, are optimizing routes and enhancing overall efficiency.

Air Freight Revolution
Drone Delivery: Unmanned aerial vehicles are taking center stage for last-mile deliveries. Companies are investing in drone technology to achieve faster and more cost-effective deliveries, especially in remote or congested areas.

Air Cargo Innovations: The air freight industry is witnessing advancements in cargo planes, including increased fuel efficiency and capacity. Supersonic air travel is also on the horizon, potentially reducing shipping times across the globe.

Seaborne Solutions

Smart Shipping: The maritime industry is incorporating IoT and blockchain technologies for smarter shipping operations. From predictive maintenance to real-time tracking, these innovations are enhancing reliability and transparency. However, this may affect forwarding costs due to currency exchange which is also true for other modes of transportation.

Autonomous Ships: The concept of autonomous vessels is gaining traction, promising to revolutionize the maritime sector. These ships can navigate oceans efficiently, reducing human error and operational costs.

Underground Freight

Hyperloop and Tube Transport: The emergence of hyperloop technology and tube transportation systems is changing the game for long-distance freight. With the potential for high-speed travel and minimal environmental impact, these systems are being explored for their viability in the near future.

Urban Mobility Solutions
Cargo Bikes and E-scooters: In congested urban areas, cargo bikes and electric scooters are becoming popular for last-mile deliveries. These eco-friendly options help reduce traffic and emissions, contributing to sustainable freight transportation.

Space-Age Logistics
Satellite Logistics: As technology continues to advance, satellite logistics is playing a crucial role in tracking and managing freight globally. This space-age solution ensures real-time visibility, security, and efficiency in the supply chain.

Electric and Sustainable Initiatives
Electric Trucks and Ships: The shift towards electric vehicles is impacting freight transportation. Electric trucks and ships are gaining momentum, reducing the industry’s carbon footprint and contributing to a more sustainable future.

Green Initiatives: Companies are increasingly adopting eco-friendly practices, such as carbon offset programs and sustainable packaging, to align with environmental goals and consumer demands.

The future of freight transportation in 2024 is a fascinating amalgamation of traditional methods and cutting-edge technologies. From the skies to the seas, and even beneath the ground, the logistics industry is exploring every avenue to create a more efficient, sustainable, and interconnected global supply chain.

In Excelsior we embrace these innovations to ensure that the freight transportation sector remains dynamic and adaptable in the years to come.

Tips when Working with a Freight Forwarder

Working with a freight forwarder international has been a crucial part of exporting products to various ports worldwide for many years. This allows exporters to have third-party support that can handle the consignments when they arrive at their destination. There are also freight forwarders that act as a customs brokerage firm as they assume responsibility for managing clearances on behalf of the shipper. 

However, despite being a vital part of the global trading process, many exporters fail to build a healthy working relationship with their international freight forwarding provider. This usually led to price fluctuations, delays in procurement, and details getting overlooked. A solid connection with a forwarder provides several benefits, including lower freight rates that shippers might not secure on their own. 

Here are some tips you can consider if you want to start partnering with an international freight forwarding company or improve your connection with them.

freight forwarder international

·         Ensure Proper Communication

The most crucial part of working with freight forwarders is ensuring effective communication throughout the shipping process. You can communicate your priorities and possible future projects to help the forwarders make the process more efficient. In addition, you can also communicate any potential negative experiences with previous forwarders, as it can help build a healthy relationship with your new freight forwarder. 

Communicating about the expectations, responsibilities, and projects will make the shipping process more manageable than usual. This will also allow both sides to collaborate on particular issues that might arise during transport. 

·         Pay On Time

One of the most significant issues faced by freight forwarders for years is late payments. This leads to them having problems paying their own vendors and creditors, which can further delay shipment. This is why exporters must pay on time, enabling them to have a good credit relationship with their freight forwarder. Payment overdue jeopardizes the entire shipping process and can lead to forwarders ending their relationship with the exporters. 

·         Avoid Cramming Shipments

Transporting shipments takes many things to be successful, which is why it is vital that you plan it in advance. Only giving yourself a few days to have the shipment out will lead to various complications. This includes difficulties in finding vessel space and shipment booking. This will also result in more expenditure due to delayed container use. 

·         Understand Export Compliance

Another crucial thing to do when exporting products is to ensure you properly understand the requirements to transport your product. For example, you must accurately classify what items you are shipping. You should also know the requirements when labeling the cargo and the paperwork required for your goods. This can help forwarders properly tender shipments and ensure they arrive at their destination without complications. 

·         Focus on Long-Term Goals

If you are looking to expand your business in the future, it is vital that you consider your freight forwarders as a part of your logistics team. You should not only see them as a third-party service that provides the lowest prices, as this can result in a challenging situation. Making them a part of your internal team will allow you to develop a healthy connection with them, helping you get competitive prices and faster transport speeds. 


With freight forwarding expected to be more crucial in the succeeding years, exporters must be able to find a freight forwarder that they’ll be confident working with for a long time. Building a healthy relationship can be a game-changer for many exporters, enabling them to reap several benefits that make shipping cost-effective and faster than usual. 

And if you are looking for the best freight forwarder in the Philippines for all your transport needs, then Excelsior Philippines is for you. We have been in the industry for more than two decades, providing our clients with peace of mind that their shipments will arrive at their destination safely. To learn about our services, contact us by visiting www.excelsior.ph/contact-us or calling (+632) 8525-9775. 

How China’s Latest COVID-19 Outbreak Affected the Global Supply Chain

The COVID-19 pandemic has crippled various industries worldwide. This led to many companies scrambling to keep their business afloat amid uncertain times. Contactless transactions have become the norm, and the adoption of modern solutions has significantly increased as organizations pivot to remote work and digital commerce.

And one sector heavily impacted by the global health crisis is the international freight forwarding industry. Strict lockdowns have led to international freight forwarding companies suffering losses due to a decrease in manufacturing and massive congestion in major ports worldwide. 

It’s been more than two years since the first wave of the pandemic hit the globe, and freight forwarder international firms have slowly recovered since then. But a recent COVID-19 outbreak in China has brought new uncertainties in the global supply chain, with the sudden increase in cases causing worker shortages in ports and important factories across the country. 

The Latest COVID-19 Outbreak in China

After easing their harsh zero-COVID policies amid the wide protests in big cities, China has faced what many experts consider the worst COVID-19 wave recorded. Authorities in the country estimated that almost 250 million individuals contracted the virus during the first 20 days of December 2022, making it the fastest rise of COVID patients in the nation since 2020. 

This unprecedented situation has led to businesses needing to close down again, as most of the workforce is infected or exposed to an infected individual. Reports also said that medical establishments are overwhelmed by the situation, most of which are struggling to cope with the sudden spike in COVID cases right after the government became lenient with their COVID prevention policies. 

Effects on the Global Supply Chain

As home to some of the biggest ports around the world, there is no wonder that the latest COVID surge in China significantly affected the world’s supply chain. Some crucial ports like Shanghai and Shenzhen have recorded a notable increase in shipment cancellations rate, with reports expecting it to go up to 31%. This came as factories found it hard to operate with limited people, especially with many reporting that more than half of workers were infected with the virus. 

The latest COVID surge in China also further decreased the demand, which was already down before the fiasco, for goods and raw materials coming from the country. This led to domestic and international factories experiencing delays in procuring products and consumers seeing a shortage in supply for some necessities. 

The lack of workers and reduced demand has also led to shipping companies decreasing the number of cargo ships sailing. The delays in the acquisition of freights have significantly contributed to the growth of blank sailings, referring to shipping firms skipping one port or altogether canceling their ship’s voyage. This causes delays in the delivery not only of goods but also consumer parcels in many parts of the globe. 


As economies continue to bounce back from the crippling effects of the COVID-19 pandemic three years ago, new disruptions brought fresh challenges to the global supply chain. China’s latest COVID surge led to factories operating at limited capacity and ports experiencing bottlenecks. Countless Chinese manufacturers could not complete orders in time, and freight rates plummeted along with it. 

The fear of another COVID-19 outbreak is already expected, especially with the country celebrating the Lunar New Year in late January 2023. But reports show that port congestion and freight procurement have improved in recent weeks, with pickup charges increasing by almost 10%. This can be a good sign that the supply chain will gradually go back to normal, despite the worries of another COVID surge in China. 

Looking for a Reliable Freight Forwarder in the Philippines? 

The whole shipping fiasco can be daunting for Filipino importers and exporters, but partnering with a reliable freight forwarding company can help you navigate the possible hurdles you’ll encounter. Excelsior Philippines has been in the industry for more than two decades, providing our clients with peace of mind that their shipments will arrive at their destination safely. To learn about our services, contact us now by clicking here or calling (+632) 8525-9775. 

5 Steps To Save When Importing From China

5 Steps To Save When Importing From China

In 2017, China replaced Japan as the top bilateral trading partner of the Philippines with a 20.7% increase in imports from 2010.

This 2018, the imports shoot up to 51.2%, which is more than twice as it was last year. The said imports include electronics and machinery, mineral fuels, iron and steel, plastics, vehicles, ceramic products, furniture and lighting, and paper among others. No wonder why many businesses, whether big or small, import from China. If you’re one of them, here are five steps to help you reduce your expenses:

Plan ahead of time

China is 3,096 kilometers away from the Philippines, which means that the importation of your goods will likely take five days or more, depending on the mode of transportation. Although you can request for faster transportation, you will be asked to pay for a rush fee.

If you want your goods to arrive on-time without the extra charges, it’s better to plan it in advance. Moreover, it will also give you more time to find a local freight forwarder that will assist you throughout the importation procedure.

Find a local freight forwarder

Most freight forwarders in the Philippines are affiliated with numerous international transport organizations and companies worldwide, including local Chinese logistic companies. Hence, you should choose a freight forwarder that can and will use its connections to negotiate for better prices on your behalf.  

Furthermore, your chosen freight forwarder should also be knowledgeable about the freight peak seasons in China (e.g., Chinese New Year) because during peak seasons, importing can become complicated due to high demand, high prices, and a probability of container shortage.

If this is a no-brainer for your local freight forwarder, you’re in the right hands. Knowing the peak seasons beforehand will help you save by importing non-urgent goods during regular seasons and avoid struggling to find a container spot during peak seasons.

Choose a suitable transportation method

You can import either by sea or by air. Sea freight is ideal for large shipments that aren’t urgently needed. On the other hand, air freight is suitable for smaller and lighter shipments that are time-sensitive.

Importing by air is more expensive than importing by sea because it’s faster and more secure. It goes through fewer hands, therefore minimizing the risk of damages and theft. To cut back on expenses, use air freight only if its necessary.

Another option that you could try is splitting your shipments. For instance, if you have one hundred boxes of imports wherein thirty boxes need to be delivered immediately, and the other seventy aren’t, consider putting the thirty on a plane and the rest on a cargo ship.

Although split shipments might seem inconvenient because it involves preparing two invoices, packing lists and handling charges among others, once you already have a local freight forwarder, it will be hassle-free because they will assist you in accomplishing the necessary paperwork.

A friendly tip: When importing by air, it is best to book six to seven days in advance of the Cargo Ready Date (CRD) while when importing by sea, consider booking three to four weeks ahead of the CRD.

Ensure proper product packaging and insurance

Proper packaging reduces the risk of product damage and loss while in transit (especially fragile and perishable products), whereas cargo insurances can be converted into cash claims in case of damage and loss.

Although the proper packaging and cargo insurances might seem more like spending than saving, neglecting them will cost you a fortune in case your goods get damaged or lost. Better safe than sorry, right?

Obtain rates with the lowest GRI (General Rate Increase) possible

General Rate Increase is the adjustment of container shipping rates and is only applicable when importing by sea.

General Rate Increase and demand are directly correlated. When the demand is high, the GRI also goes up and vice versa, which means that GRIs go up during peak seasons.

The good news is, if you followed the first four steps mentioned earlier, especially planning ahead of time, you will be able to choose between multiple ocean freight rates and obtain the lowest GRI even during a peak season because as the saying goes ‘the early bird catches the worm.’

These five steps only prove that there are always ways to save when you are determined to look for them.

Here at Excelsior Worldwide Freight Logistics, we have equipped people who are knowledgeable regarding import procedures and are committed to reducing your expenditures as much as you are.

We also conduct free orientation for those who are willing to learn about importation & exportation. It is our advocacy to share our knowledge & experience for 17 years in the business. 

Contact us today at (063) 525-9775 or email us at wecare@excelsior.ph



The Importance of Being an Accredited Importer and Exporter in the Philippines

The Importance of Being an Accredited Importer and Exporter in the Philippines

Over the last five years, the Philippines has become one of the most competitive economies being the 38th largest export economy worldwide and forecasted by HSBC as a potential 16th largest economy by the year 2050. Given the fact that the country’s economy itself has advanced, the implementation of trade policies is stricter and the standards, higher. Having that said, here is a detailed list and account of the importance of being an accredited importer and exporter in the Philippines:


Businesses who aspire to be accredited are carefully assessed and evaluated by a neutral accrediting body based on numerous requirements and conditions, providing clients with a reliable and fair basis when choosing an import and export company and a guarantee of quality service. After getting accredited, chances are you will be a premier choice in the import and export industry.

Promotion and advertising

Getting accredited is an excellent marketing strategy because after passing the accreditation assessment, you will be awarded a certificate of accreditation that you can publish in your website to demonstrate your commitment to providing quality to your present and potential clients.

Keeping ahead of the competition

Not every import and export business volunteers to undergo the accreditation process because they lack knowledge of its importance and only a few passes the assessment done by the accreditation body.  That is why getting accredited gives you an edge over your competitors.


As an accredited importer, you have the privilege of getting exempted from payment of import duties upon the observance of formalities and regulations, while an unaccredited business doesn’t.

Minimized expenses

If you have numerous shipments to be made, you can reduce your expenditures by directly processing your entries with the Bureau of Customs instead of paying third-party consignees to do the job.

The main objectives of accreditations in the Philippines are to prevent smuggling, combat tax fraud, and evasion, and to transform the Philippines into an exporting nation through cooperation between government and private entities.

But, as you can see in this article, it is just as beneficial to every business inside the country because it encourages each business to improve and excel in their chosen industries constantly.

Here at Excelsior Worldwide Freight Logistics, we have equipped people who are knowledgeable regarding import and export legalities and are willing to help you get accredited.

We also conduct free orientation for those who are willing to learn about importation & exportation. It is our advocacy to share our knowledge & experience for 17 years in the business. 

Contact us today at (063) 525-9775 or email us at wecare@excelsior.ph

To learn more about the importance of being an accredited importer in the Philippines, see this infographic on the advantages of being an accredited importer.



Importer Tips: Tips to Effectively Manage Your Import Supply Chain

Importer Tips Tips to Effectively Manage Your Import Supply Chain

Most importers will testify that managing shipments – from proper documentation to clearing cargos at the docks – is not a simple task. The import process involves a plethora of interactions and complying with dozens of regulations. These requisites can have a significant impact on your supply chain. Therefore, careful planning and fluid supply chain execution are required to minimize the uncertainties throughout the whole process.

Here are some tips that you can implement to optimize imports supply chain and speed up cycle time while complying with increased regulatory requirements in the industry.

1. Identify All Potential Pain Points

To optimize your supply chain, you must identify all the potential pain points that may cause hiccups in your operations along the way. Knowing these disruptions before they arise will enable you to create a proactive strategy with your service providers.

Aside from factors such as weather and catastrophic events, planning for the following common pain points in the supply chain will help ensure seamless import operations in the long run:

  • Port congestion and labor disputes
  • An unexpected change in vessel route
  • In-transit capacity crunches
  • Holidays, especially Chinese New Year.

2. Weigh the Benefits of LCL vs. FCL Shipping

When importing from overseas, you will likely choose between less than container load (LCL) and full container load (FCL) as a means of shipping your cargo. Each method has its own advantages and drawbacks. For instance, LCL will help you save on cost since the shipping price is shared among other importers. One of the drawbacks of this shipping method, however, is that the arrival schedule of shipments is often inconsistent. Nonetheless, there are services providers that offer regularly scheduled LCL services.

3. Hire a Trustworthy Customs Broker

Auditing your customs documents consistently is must to protect the operations and the namesake of your import business. If time is an issue, you can hire a trustworthy customs broker who will look over your records and will make sure everything matches up. In doing so, you will not only be able to ensure legitimate import operations, but you will also be able to focus on other important aspects of your growing business.

4. Ensure All Your Logistics Service Providers are Linked

Finally, a streamlined import-based supply chain will ultimately depend on the ability of your transportation and logistics partners to communicate with you and one another.

Since there are so many moving parts within international logistics, failures tend to occur in the spaces between each parties. If your service providers are communicating well with you, but you are still encountering issues, you may want to ensure that they are on the same page with each other.

It is very easy to get overwhelmed by the nuts and bolts of the complex import-based supply chain management. Being well-informed and asking your trusted customs broker and freight forwarder the right questions can significantly help you avoid costly surprises.

Excelsior Worldwide Freight Logistics conduct free orientation for those who are willing to learn about importation & exportation. It is our advocacy to share our knowledge & experience for 17 years in the business. Contact us today to learn more about our service.

Customs Compliance for Philippine Importers: Things to Know About the Tariff System of the CMTA (Infographic)

On 30 May 2016, the Republic Act (RA) No. 10863, otherwise known as the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act was implemented signed, which amended many sections of the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines (TCCP).

This Act changed the course of the relationship between Customs and Trade by modernizing Customs rules and procedures for faster trade, reduce opportunities for corruption while improving Customs service delivery and efficiency of the supply chain.

Customs Compliance for Philippine Importers - Things to Know About the Tariff System of the CMTA

What Happened After the CMTA Was Signed?

From the CMTA, several new concepts emerged – all of which aim to facilitate a smoother transaction between businesses and the Customs, adoption of internal best practices, and simplified and harmonized processes, among others. These new concepts include:

  • Expansion of the customs mandate to include trade facilitation
  • Promotion of ‘paperless’ transactions through the use of information and communication technology.
  • Definition of “free zones” to harmonize rule and regulations governing all special economic zones, free ports, and similar authorities.
  • Provision for tax and duty status in on ‘relief consignments’ to, among others, promote donations and international aid during calamities and major disasters.
  • Provision for legal interests in case of non-payment of duties and taxes.
  • Procedure for an advance ruling to allow early resolution of customs issues even if there is no actual importation involved.
  • The provision on ‘Authorized Economic Operator’ or AEO, an expansion of the original concept of ‘Authorized Operator’ under the Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC) and adoption of the expanded program of the World Customs Organization (WCO) to promote both trade compliance and security in the supply chain.
  • Definition of ‘Alerts’ to harmonize and simplify rules of the apprehension of shipments, to make the process transparent for the trading community, and to prevent abuse by customs and enforcement officers.
  • Provision for summary remedies such as distraint on personal property and levy on real property to collect duties, taxes, and other charges arising from a customs audit.
  • Creation of a Forfeiture Fund for outsourcing customs functions, facilitating processes, capacity building, and modernization through automation; and
  • Creation of Congressional Customs and Tariff Oversight Committee to oversee the implementation of the CMTA.

Changes in Tariff System

The Tariff Administration and Policy (Title XVI) of the Act are composed of three chapters, with most of the provisions being based on the old code.

  • Chapter 1 – Tariff Commission

A major change in the old code provides the commission the power and function to issue an advance ruling on the tariff classification of imported goods and render rulings on disputes over tariff classification. This section also restates the jurisdiction of the commission over trade remedy measures – dumping, safeguard, and countervailing duties.

  • Chapter 2 – Flexible Tariffs

This section restates the old provisions on “flexible clause” and “promotion of foreign trade.” The flexible clause empowers the President to:

  • Increase, reduce, or remove existing rates of import duty.
  • Establish import quotas or ban imports of any commodity.
  • Impose additional duty on all imports not exceeding 10% ad valorem.
  • Chapter 3 Tariff Nomenclature and Rate of Duty

This section restates many of the old provisions of the provides the tariff classification and duty system for imported and exported goods. This chapter is composed of 3 sections as follows:

  • General Rules on Interpretation (Section 1610)
  • Tariff Nomenclature and Rates of Import Duty (Section 1611)
  • Tariff Nomenclature and Rates of Export Duty (Section 1612)

Implications of the Revised Tariff System

Under the revised tariff system, certain adjustments (depending on the INCOTERM used) may be made on the invoice price to arrive at the dutiable value. The classification process for regularly imported goods remains simple and straightforward, while the opposite can be expected for finished and processed goods as well as for new products that involve composites or mixtures.

The new product classification system provided is mainly based on the 8-digit ASEAN Harmonized Tariff Nomenclature (AHTN), the first six digits of which is based on the Harmonized System (HS) while the seventh and eighth digit codes are assigned to ASEAN subheadings with more than 10,000 tariff lines. Beyond the 8-digit level, member countries are allowed to create national subheadings.

How can Importers Make Sense of These Regulations?

All importers are encouraged to review this document on an annual basis to support their due diligence in exercising Reasonable Care in all international transactions with Customs.  Importers and their trusted brokers should work through the questions in this publication annually to ensure that both are using the information, tools, and guidance provided by BoC to submit accurate entries every time.

If you have further questions regarding the Tariff System under the CMTA, contact Excelsior Worldwide Freight Logistics Corp. by visiting our website at www.excelsior.ph, or you may reach us by calling (063) 525-9775 or send us an e-mail through wecare@excelsior.ph

Excelsior Worldwide conduct free orientation for those who are willing to learn about importation & exportation. It is our advocacy to share our knowledge & experienced for 17 yrs. in the business.

Philippine Importers: Here’s How to Compute Your Import Tax and Duty

How to Compute Your Import Tax and Duty

Paying the right customs tax and duty in your import business is crucial to ensure that your operations are legitimate. That is why it important that you hire a legitimate licensed customs broker is critical to avoid the hassle of facing significant penalties or even legal ramifications from the Bureau of Customs.

In the Philippines, the Customs Law indicates that all imported goods above P10,000 are subject to payment of duties, taxes, and other local charges. If you have just started your import business and not sure on how your trusted customs broker will come up with the import tax and duty for your upcoming shipment, we detail in this post how to calculate import tax and some of the additional charges which you should be aware of.

How to Calculate Import Tax and Duty

Customs Duties or Import duty will be pending and need to be cleared while importing goods into the Philippines. Customs clearance can be executed either by a private individual or a commercial entity. The valuation method often used to arrive at dutiable value is CIF (Cost Insurance and Freight), i.e., the cost of the imported goods, the shipping cost, and the insurance cost. Imports are also subjected to Sales Tax.

Excelsior conducts free orientation for those who are willing to learn about importation and exportation. It is our advocacy to share our knowledge and 17 years of experience in business. You can contact Excelsior Worldwide Freight Logistics Corp. today at (+632) 525-9775 or email us at wecare@excelsior.ph

Excelsior Worldwide Logistics Corp.