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All about non-commercial goods in import and export

I. What are non-commercial goods?

Non-commercial goods are goods that are not subject to import or export duties. This determines their importance in expanding markets and creating business opportunities. In addition, non-commercial goods are clearly defined in Article 69 of the Export and Import Goods Law, which does not aim for commercial purposes of Circular 128/2013/TT-BTC dated September 10, 2013 as follows:

Non-commercial goods include:

  • Gifts from foreign organizations and individuals sent to Vietnamese organizations and individuals; gifts from Vietnamese organizations and individuals sent to foreign organizations and individuals;

  • Goods of diplomatic missions, international organizations in Vietnam and their employees;

  • Humanitarian aid goods;

  • Temporary import and export goods exempted from taxes for individuals granted by the Vietnamese State;

  • Unpaid samples;

  • Temporary export tools, temporary import tools with a limited period of time of agencies, organizations, individuals leaving or entering the country;

  • Assets moved by organizations, individuals;

  • Personal luggage of individuals entering the country sent by bill of lading, goods carried by individuals entering the country exceeding tax-exempt standards;

  • Other non-commercial goods.

Therefore, products that are exported or imported without commercial purposes, trading. They are often used for gifting, advertising, assistance, or product introduction, and are considered non-commercial goods.

non-commercial goods
(non-commercial goods)

II. Can non-commercial goods be sold?

As explained above, non-commercial goods are goods that are not intended for commercial purposes, but many people ask if non-commercial goods that have been used for purposes such as product introduction, testing, will be handled? Can they be legally sold?

According to Article 6 of the Investment Law No. 61/2020/QH14 dated June 17, 2020, it is regulated as follows:

"The following business investment activities are prohibited:

a) Business activities involving drugs as prescribed in Appendix I of this Law;

b) Business activities involving chemicals, minerals as prescribed in Appendix II of this Law;

c) Business activities involving specimens of wild plants, wild animals exploited from nature. Regulations in Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora; specimens of forest plants, forest animals, endangered, rare aquatic products, Group I with natural origin as prescribed in Appendix III of this Law;

d) Prostitution business.

đ) Buying, selling humans, bodies, body parts, fetuses.

e) Business activities related to human cloning.

g) Fireworks business.

h) Debt collection services."

Non-commercial goods are a general term to refer to imported goods that are not intended for business purposes.

Therefore, based on this circular, there are no regulations prohibiting the sale of non-commercial goods.

However, when selling non-commercial goods, they will be classified as asset liquidation. Import taxes, especially input VAT, will not be deductible. For the liquidation of non-commercial goods, other revenue must be recorded.

III. Types of import and export of non-commercial goods.

Based on Decision 1357/QD-TCHQ dated May 18, 2021, the types of import and export codes for non-commercial goods are as follows:

Export types:

Code: H21

Name: Other exports

Import types:

Code: H11

Name: Other imports

Regulating the import and export codes for non-commercial goods will help businesses reduce errors, risks, and difficulties in the customs declaration process. If a business incorrectly applies this code, the customs declaration must be canceled. This will hinder the customs clearance process and affect the business's schedule when it needs that item for product introduction and display purposes.

In addition, import and export orders with a value below 1,000,000 VND are not subject to import duties and import VAT according to Decision 78/2010/QD-TTg dated November 30, 2010.

IV. What should businesses note when importing non-commercial goods?

When importing non-commercial goods, businesses should note the following after completing the import procedures for non-commercial goods:

  1. Goods not subject to duty must also pay import taxes. If the goods are valued at less than 1,000,000VND, no taxes are required. For export enterprises importing non-dutiable goods, no value-added tax is required at the import stage.

  2. Non-dutiable goods also enjoy preferential tax if there is a C/O (certificate of origin).

  3. VAT on imported non-dutiable goods is not deductible. This tax is included in other expenses in the tax declaration.

  4. Non-dutiable goods can be sold as asset liquidation. Record other revenue for the enterprise.

  5. Non-dutiable goods can be paid or unpaid through banks. (For example: sample payment; humanitarian aid goods do not require payment).

  6. Non-dutiable goods are mostly not subject to specialized inspection or certification of conformity or product declaration.

V. Conclusion

Therefore, non-dutiable goods have been clearly regulated by law in the provisions. This helps enterprises to facilitate the import and export of non-dutiable goods, making it easier to avoid risks when dealing with goods.

Hopefully, the above article has helped you understand what non-dutiable goods are and the important considerations for importing non-dutiable goods.

Contact us: Ryan Hoang - Global Network Department Email: Hotline: 0947 672 825



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