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Business enterprises have to be aware of the import and export procedures and other international trade considerations in the country
a) Customs Clearance and Valuation
In order to clear goods through Customs, an importer must present the usual commercial documents such as bill of lading, airway
bill and commercial invoice. The Import Declaration Form is used for statistical purposes, and no fee is required. For goods to be
cleared at the border, the importer fills the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) Form CE 20, the standard form for entry and exit.
Zambia is using the Automated System for Customs Data and Management (ASYCUDA). Customs clearance can be accomplished
within hours, but incomplete forms and other difficulties, (e.g. lack of supporting documents) can result in substantial delays.
b) Tariff Structure
Zambia applies tariffs on the c.i.f. (cost, insurance and freight) basis. Customs tariffs are calculated on the basis of the dutiable
value, based on the WTO Agreement on Customs Valuation. Most tariffs are ad valorem, but a few specific tariffs remain. Zambia
uses the international harmonized system. Zambia’s tariff schedule is structured around four tiers: 0 %, 5 %, 15% and 25 % ratesof duty. Virtually all raw materials and most industrial or productive machinery fall within the 0 and 5 percent tariff categories, while
most imported intermediate goods are subject to 15 percent, and imported final products are rated at 25 percent. Zambia’s simple
average import tariff is about 14 percent.
c) Import Restrictions
Import prohibitions are maintained for environmental, health and security reasons. Import licensing is required for most agricultural
products. Zambia does not currently apply trade sanctions.
d) Sanitary and Phytosanitary Regulations
Sanitary and phytosanitary regulations are applied to imports of live animals, plants and seeds. A sanitary certificate from the
exporting country is required as a prerequisite to the issuance of the veterinary permit. Food imports must satisfy the provisions of
the Food and Drugs Act of September 1978 which requires packaging and labeling requirement for food, and standards for maize
sump, rice and bread.
e) Export Procedures
Exporters must complete an export declaration form (standard customs authority form ZRA CE 20, mainly for statistical purposes.
An original commercial invoice and a packaging list for shipment should accompany the form CE20. An airway bill or bill of lading
for transportation of exports should be obtained either from the freight forwarder or the transporter being used. Zambia has no
export taxes, charges and levies.
If there are preferences that are being claimed in the exporting market (e.g., reduced tariffs), then an appropriate stamped certificate
of origin, from the ZRA is required. COMESA, SADC, EU and AGOA textiles have different certificates of origin.
If the good is a commodity covered by the Veterinary Department, a sanitary/phytosanitary certificate is needed. A phytosanitary
certificate is obtained from the Mount Makulu Research Station for seeds, stems, and fruits.
A very limited number of goods require a special export permit. Gemstone exports require a permit from the Ministry of Mines,
Energy and Water Development; timber requires a timber verification certificate from the Forestry Department.
f) Regional Agreements
 The Common Market for East and Southern Africa
The Common Market for East and Southern Africa 1 (COMESA) has been operating, in one form or another, since 1981.
Economic integration is envisaged to progress from the Free Trade Area (FTA) to an economic monetary union. The FTA
became operational on 1st November 2000 with nine participating countries. The COMESA FTA is an agreement among
members not to apply customs duties or charges on goods traded amongst themselves. The eligible goods for duty-free
treatment must meet the agreed upon Rules of Origin. Members also agree to eliminate all non-tariff barriers to trade
between them. The nine member countries that are implementing zero tariffs are Egypt, Sudan, Kenya, Djibouti, Malawi,
Madagascar, Mauritius, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
A COMESA Certificate of Origin is required for each consignment of goods and is obtained from the Revenue Authority in
respective member countries.
 The Southern Africa Development Community
Members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), comprising 14 countries2, signed a Trade Protocol,
which calls for the implementation of a Free Trade Area. Each country has negotiated two reduced tariff schedules. One
schedule is applicable only for South Africa and another schedule for all other SADC members. Zambia’s implementation
of her offer, which came into effect on 30th April 2001, is provided to those countries that provide Zambia with the SADC
reduced tariff schedule.
The tariff schedule applicable to SADC members, with the exception of South Africa, has three categories. Categories A
are those products which go to zero-duty immediately upon implementation. The tariff for Category B products gradually
goes down to zero-duty over a period of eight years, and the tariff of Category C products reaches zero-duty twelve years
after implementation. Category C products are known as sensitive products, and include for Zambia meat and dairy
products, tea, some flours, raw sugar, cement, textiles and clothing, and motor vehicles. A SADC Certificate of Origin is
required for each consignment of goods and is obtained from the Zambia Revenue Authority.

 

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