Customs is a government department that collects tariffs and oversees what is being imported into and exported out of a country. When a visitor or citizen enters or leaves a country, it is mandatory for them to declare if they are carrying cash or goods whose value is equivalent to or exceeds the amount allowed by law. Aside from imposing duties, customs also controls what are prohibited into and out of a country’s border. For example, visitors entering another country must declare if they are carrying plants,animals or fresh fruits. This is to prevent against any potential hazard the animal or plant in question may cause to the local ecosystem. If you are a constant international traveler, chances are you are no stranger to customs declaration!
Customs declaration is a form that gives detailed information about goods being imported and exported,including article/product ID,HS code, article name, quantity, price/value,country of origin and etc. The importer or exporter is required to fill out the list and pay duties (if applicable) at the customs. Customs play a crucial role in national security and are a symbol of State sovereignty. To facility trade, two or more countries or economies may enter into an agreement to remove tariffs and other restrictions on goods traded between each other,which is gaining momentum in recent years as more and more nations opt to sign complementary trade agreements outside the World Trade Organization(WTO).
Customs declaration is usually complicated and tricky. It is always in your best interest to find out whether you should declare or not prior to your trip. Failing to do so may cause you trouble and loss of money!