WCO and South African Institute of Taxation untangle complexities of tariff classification

25 February 2022

On 24 February 2022, the South African Institute of Taxation (SAIT) delivered a webinar on issues related to commodity classification and taxation of international trade transactions. The webinar gathered a wide audience of participants from the private sector, including SAIT members and the South African Freight Forwarders Association. Upon the invitation of the SAIT, the webinar panel of experts was joined by a representative of the EU-WCO Programme for Harmonized System in Africa (HS-Africa Programme), funded by the European Union.

The webinar offered an opportunity to discuss the latest developments related to Customs and tax policies, with a specific focus on the new version of the Harmonized System. In his interventions, the representative of the HS-Africa Programme briefly introduced the HS emphasizing its role of a common language of international commerce and its importance for trade facilitation. He called attention of participants to some of the most significant changes made in the HS as a result of the HS 2022 amendments, to some aspects of the maintenance of the HS by the WCO, and to the importance of the uniform use of the latest edition of the HS by Customs and trade.  

Other webinar panelists shared their insights with regard to ensuring strict and consistent compliance with Customs regulations. They stressed the role of commodity classification as the basis for determining many of the most essential elements of Customs and trade transactions, along with origin and valuation of traded items. Panelists felt that it would be in the best interest of trade operators to follow closely the developments in these areas, such as tariff amendments. This would help operators to adjust business processes and operation models and avoid risks, potential disputes, as well as disruptions of supply chains.

For more details, please, contact capacity.building@wcoomd.org