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Proposal to halve import and export declaration charges

     In the face of the effects caused by the worsening external economic environment on Hong Kong's external merchandise trade, the Government has proposed the introduction of the Import and Export (Registration) (Amendment) Regulation 2012 to halve the import and export declaration charges (TDEC) to provide timely relief for businesses, a spokesman for the Commerce and Economic Development Bureau said today (April 18).

     The Financial Secretary announced in his Budget Speech on February 1, 2012, a package of support measures for the business sector. One of the measures is to reduce TDEC across the board by half to ease the business costs for the import and export trade.

     "The proposed reduction of TDEC would have positive effects on Hong Kong's external trade as it would lower the transaction costs, and thus directly benefit the import and export sector generally," the spokesman said.

     The spokesman added that the proposal was expected to help each company that lodged trade declarations to save about $9,000 a year on average. The proposed reduction would also underline the efforts of the Hong Kong Government in enhancing Hong Kong's competitiveness as an international trading centre.

     The Amendment Regulation, which aims to make the proposed reduction effective, will be introduced into the Legislative Council on May 9 this year. Subject to the Legislative Council's approval, the Amendment Regulation will be gazetted on May 18 and become effective on June 1.

     The Customs and Excise Department and the Census and Statistics Department will, upon the coming into effect of the proposal, provide the information in relation to the arrangements of TDEC reduction through their departmental websites, enquiries hotlines and newsletters. Importers and exporters may also make enquiries with the three service providers of the Government Electronic Trading Services, viz Brio Electronic Commerce Limited, Global e-Trading Services Limited and Tradelink Electronic Commerce Limited.

     At present, as stipulated under the Import and Export (Registration) Regulations (Cap 60E), any person who imports, exports or re-exports any article other than an exempted article is required to lodge with the Commissioner of Customs and Excise an import or export declaration within 14 days and pay the charges.

Ends/Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Issued at HKT 18:01


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