Import Tariffs: Singapore levies a 7% Goods and Services Tax (GST). For dutiable goods, the taxable value for GST is calculated based on the CIF (Cost, Insurance, and Freight) value, plus all duties and other charges. In the case of non-dutiable goods, GST will be based on the CIF value plus any commission and other incidental charges whether or not shown on the invoice. If the goods are dutiable, the GST will be collected simultaneously with the duties. Special provisions pertain to goods stored in licensed warehouses and free trade zones.
Import Duty: Singapore is generally a free port and an open economy. More than 99% of all imports into Singapore enter the country duty-free. For social and/or environmental reasons, Singapore levies high excise taxes on distilled spirits and wine, tobacco products, motor vehicles and petroleum products.
Import Requirements and Documentation: Companies must make an inward declaration for all goods imported into Singapore. All imports require an import permit although this is largely a statistical requirement for most goods. The import of trade samples that is below US$300 is not subject to payment of duty and/or GST. In addition, no permit is required for their import. Bona fide trade samples (excluding liquors and tobacco) may be imported for the following purposes: solely for the purpose of soliciting orders for goods to be supplied from abroad; for demonstration in Singapore to enable manufacturers in Singapore to produce such articles to fulfill orders from abroad or by a manufacturer for the purpose of copying; and for testing or experimenting before producing such articles in Singapore.
Customs Regulations: IIn Singapore, valuation for customs purposes is based on the Customs Valuation Code (CVC). The primary basis for customs value is the transaction value of the imported goods when sold for export to Singapore. Where goods are dutiable, ad valorem or specific rates may be applied. An ad valorem rate, which is most commonly applied, is a percentage of the customs value of the imported goods. A specific rate is a specified amount per unit of weight of other quantity. Cost, insurance, freight, handling charges and all other charges incidental to the sale and delivery of the goods are taken into account when the duty is assessed. Exporters are required to ensure that the declared values of goods have not been undervalued or the Customs and Excise Department will increase the values declared.
U.S. Export Controls: U.S. exporters should consult the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) for information on how export license requirements may apply to the sale of their goods. If necessary, a commodity classification request may be submitted in order to obtain the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) assistance in determining how an item is controlled (i.e., the item’s classification) and the applicable licensing policy.
Source: The International Trade Administration (ITA), U.S. Department of Commerce www.export.gov