Why do you need a professional freight forwarder for?

There are so many reasons why a Freight Forwarder is needed when shipping goods from suppliers in China to Amazon in Europe:

  1. DEALING WITH SHIPPING LINE OR AIRLINE. First and foremost, if it was so easy dealing directly with a shipping line or airline to book freight, Freight Forwarders would not exist.
  2. SHIPPING RATES. The buying power of a Freight Forwarder is much greater than the average importer, so the rates we get are much better. Sometimes 50-100% better depending on the route.
  3. CONSOLIDATION. Shipping lines do not offer consolidation services. This is something that Forwarders developed and operate, by consolidating clients cargo in one place, to create enough ‘pay load’ to fill a container. The proportion of costs are spread across each cbm/ton and a sell rate is created which included the freight from port to port, and the added service features either side.
  4. SERVICE. A good forwarder will learn your business, spot trends and recommend alternative efficiency improvements to maximise your profits. Sometimes shipping less more frequently, is better than shipping bulk less often. Quick example is cash flow vs storage costs.
  5. CUSTOMS & EXCISE. A Forwarder declares your import or export to the customs for a small fee, pays out the due funds and re-invoices you at net cost! Shipping lines and Airlines do not do this.
  6. DELIVERY. How do you want your expensive investment of goods delivered? Protected, wrapped, to FBA Spec and no doubt sitting neatly on secure pallets? Then again, you need a Freight Forwarder to ensure this happens. We may even throw in some photos before it heads off to ‘Amazon World’ too!
import vat

New VAT EU rules on imports starting July 01, 2021

VAT (Value Added Tax) rules on online sales are going to change on July 1st, 2021. Be sure to consider the following changes when making a purchase online from a seller based outside the EU like e.g. China because it will impact the final cost of your products.

Option 1
You will pay duty and VAT on your imports into the EU

The VAT exemption for imports valued of up to 22 EUR will no longer be valid.

Till July 1st, 2021 if you purchase a product of a value of up to 22 EUR, you don’t pay import VAT when clearing the customs on imports into the EU.

Starting July 1st, 2021 such clearance will add fees to your purchase – you will have to pay import VAT (most often standard rate of around 18-24% depending on the EU country you import to) and import duty (which is usually around another 3-20% depending on the type of product being imported; import duty rates are the same in all EU countries).

Option 2
Your seller will pay import VAT and duty for you on your imports into the EU

Your overseas seller may decide to register for so call IOSS – Import One-Stop-Shop which is an online platform introduced by the European Union, where foreign e-commerce businesses can register to pay import VAT and duty for you and other buyers located in the EU.

When you buy a product online which is going to be shipped from e.g. China, your Chinese seller can register for IOSS and include the VAT in the retail price.

OISS is intended for products / sales valued up to 150 EUR.

Starting July 1st, 2021 when you receive a request from your courier company to pay import VAT and duty on your shipment from e.g. China, it will mean that:

  • the seller is not registered for the IOSS platform
  • the shipping documents are not complete
  • the value of the goods in higher than 150 EUR

Please make sure to contact your foreign seller before you make a purchase, to determine if VAT and duty charges are already included in your retail price.