New edition of the WCO/WHO HS Classification List for COVID-19 Medical Supplies now available

04 June 2020

In support of trade facilitation during the COVID-19 pandemic, the WCO Secretariat has further enhanced the usefulness of the joint WCO/WHO HS Classification List for COVID-19 Medical Supplies by publishing a new edition with an updated goods list and links to Member’s lists.

Following the overwhelmingly positive feedback received after the publication of both the WCO/WHO HS Classification List for COVID-19 Medical Supplies and the WHO/WCO List of Priority Medicines, the Secretariat has given consideration to many suggestions and requests to further expand the COVID-19 Medical Supplies Lists. The types of additional goods requested vary widely, from ambulances to body bags. While it is not possible to expand the List to cover all goods of interest, the WCO has continued to evaluate the suggested addition to the List and has made a number of updates.

While issues of harmonization of classification practice are examined by the WCO Harmonized System Committee for international decision, at the request of Members, the Secretariat has looked at offering practical assistance practically in the short term. Differences in classification were clearly indicated during the evaluation of the goods for inclusion. Even though all differences may not have been captured, the changes assist Members and traders in determining where there may be a need to seek or provide clarification of local practices. Updates in relation to classification practices are also included in this edition.

Updates are marked with asterisks as follows: * for a new item; ** for an updated description; and *** for an updated classification.

A new and vital feature is the list of links to national lists of medical supplies published by WCO Members. As the WCO can only provide indications of classification at the six-digit level, such national lists, where available, play a key role in providing the correct national classifications, as determined by the relevant administrations, for specific countries or regions. Where there is a variation in classification between the indicative WCO/WHO Classification List and an official Customs classification put forward by a government, the government list takes precedence for that country.

In addition to providing domestic classifications, such lists may also expand the goods covered to meet the needs of importers of goods that are of particular importance to their country.

This list of links is not fully exhaustive as it only contains those links of which we are aware to date. Members are therefore invited to share any links which are currently missing.