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Importing from China? Here are the things to remember

China is one the most important suppliers of American import goods. Its 2020 imports were $434.7 Billion. US imports to China make up 18% of all US imports.
More businesses are looking at China to import goods. However, it is crucial to assess the associated costs like shipping fees, international invoices, and restrictions.

This article will show you how to import products from China to the USA. We’ll also cover financial tools that will help you reduce import costs.

Importing from China in the USA

There are many reasons that businesses might choose to import products directly from China to the USA.

Let’s take a look at some of the major advantages and disadvantages associated with importing products made in China.

Import requirements

CBP offers a basic guide to those who want to start an import/export business. However you will need certain documents before a shipment can be allowed into the US.

CBP Form 7533 Form Entry manifest. Application and special permit for immediate delivery (CBP form 3461 Form CBP Form 3461

Do you have the right to enter?

A proforma and commercial invoice

Packing lists

If required by your goods, you will need to provide proof of import license/permit

All these documents must arrive at least 15 calendar day before imports reach the US port-of-entry.

Import restrictions

If you are importing to USA via China, there are generally no restrictions on the import of most products.

There are general guidelines for import restrictions, and there may be specific products that require additional permissions.

Some of these products could be subjected to import restrictions.

Agricultural commodities

Dairy products such as cheese, milk, or other dairy products
Fruits, veggies, and nuts
Livestock and animals
Meat, poultry, egg and egg products
Plants and products

Arms, ammunition and radioactive materials

Weapons, Ammunition & Explosives.
Radioactive Materials and Nuclear Reactors

Consumer Products

The safety and energy conservation standards for household appliances in the USA must be met.
US energy performance standards must be met by all commercial and industrial equipment.

US Customers and Borders Protection (CBP), have published a list listing commodities that require an import license.

For more information on import restrictions, contact the federal agency that regulates products you are interested in importing.
US import tax

However, import tax or customs taxes are levied on products entering America. There are a few things you should keep in mind.

Firstly, it is possible that shipments from certain countries are exempted depending on trade agreement.

The country from which the shipment originated as well as the product type will affect the import tax.

Importing from China is expensive

Apart from the import duty, there are other cost considerations.

Transport and logistics are the two most significant costs for import businesses.

It will also include shipping to the United States and warehouse storage.

Consider the costs of storage facilities if warehouse storage is required.

Other secondary importing expenses include website costs to list and promote products, as well as marketing costs.

How to Find Chinese Wholesale Suppliers

Many wholesale suppliers in China offer a wide range of products. Before making any payment, you should thoroughly vet the supplier.

Check out wholesale suppliers online before making any agreements or working with them.

Before placing an order for a larger quantity, get samples and minimum orders.

It may not always be possible to visit wholesalers located in China. But, ask them for documents and proof of their manufacturing.

You can also ask local experts for recommendations and network to find wholesale suppliers that fit your business’ needs.

Shipping from China into the USA

There are many shipping options that can be used to send your products from China to the United States.

ePacket shipping can be a cost-effective option for low-value items.

This is a low-cost, fast shipping method that utilizes third-party logistics (e.g. 3PL) to deliver goods from China and Hong Kong into the US.

For items that are more expensive, you might consider working with logistics and shipping companies such as DHL to get faster delivery.

All imports to the USA must have a customs bonds in order for them to pay any import duties, taxes, or other fees that may be levied.

The Customs and Border Protection agency maintains a comprehensive list of ports of entries that can be helpful, including brokers for each port.

Important to be aware of are currency differences. Specifically, Renminbi or RMB, which is China’s official currency, the Yuan, as well the two other currencies.

Yuan is the currency unit. CNY, CNH and CNY are two types Renminbi.

Some importing goods from China may have insurance requirements.

Import companies can partner with private insurance brokers to provide protection for imported goods during transit.

Incoterms are ‘international terms of business’ that make insurance necessary.

Incoterms are used for understanding and assigning responsibility to buyers or sellers during the shipping process. They can also be used to assess and quantify any potential risks.

Incoterms cover Cost and Freight Incoterms and Cost Insurance and Freight Incoterms.

CIF Incoterms denotes the merchandise’s actual value upon its arrival in the United States. It is calculated when you add import charges to the total price of the items.
The USA can import profitable products from China

There are many kinds of goods that could be imported. Let’s take a look 4 5 at the top products worth your consideration

Face masks
Accessories and home decor items
Peripheral accessory for mobile phones: wireless chargers and USB charging cables
Cooking appliances like microwave ovens, air fryers, and steel cooking dishes
Security cameras

These are just a handful of ideas to help jumpstart business ideas related to importing products to the United States from China.

Talking with suppliers and looking at wholesalers will help you get more ideas and inspiration to bring great products to the US.
Take into account these things when you’re deciding what products to bring into the US from China:

Base cost of the item

Analyzing items’ demand based on their current sellers and availability

Market research may include buying syndicated reports from government sources or your own market research. You can also determine which customers will buy the product. Also, you can find out if the item is currently being offered on the markets and, if yes, how much.

Shipping and storage cost, including warehouse storage and transportation costs.

Any overhead expenses you incur as a business, such website hosting or brick and mortar store

Marketing costs that increase awareness and exposure for products in target markets.

These factors can be used to calculate the price you would have to charge for a profit.