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Which cases are subject to inspection of customs value for export goods?

12:58 | 02/07/2019

VCN - Facing the situation that enterprises misrepresent customs value for export goods and insufficiently declare constituent elements of the selling price at export border gate, declare prices lower than the selling price at export border gate or declare information inconsistent with related documents for export tax evasion and frauds, the General Department of Customs has instructed its units to unify inspection of customs value for export goods to tighten management of customs value for these goods.

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which cases are subject to inspection of customs value for export goods

Cases subject to inspection

Regarding customs value declaration for export goods, the General Department of Customs (GDC) said for taxable export goods, Customs declarants must self declare and determine customs value. Declared and taxable value on the export declaration must be the selling price at the export border gate, in line with selling price stated in the sales contract or commercial invoices or other documents related to export goods. If the selling price at the export border gate includes international freight and insurance costs, the two costs will be excluded from the selling price at the export gate to determine the customs value.

Accordingly, guiding inspection of customs value for export goods, the General Department of Customs said that upon inspection for customs clearance, if the customs declaration is classified in inspection channel (Yellow and Red) and required for inspection of customs value, customs officers must inspect documents and vouchers submitted by customs declarants. The selling price at export gates must be similar with the price in the sales contract signed with foreign partners, as must commercial invoices issued by exporters for foreign partners for payment between the buyer and seller; and other documents and vouchers related to the calculation and payment of fees forming the selling price at export gates. The inspection result shall be handled as follows:

If the selling price at export border gates and costs constituting the selling price at the export border gate are inconsistent with the documents presented in the customs dossier, then the declared customs value shall be rejected and customs valuation, tax assessment and sanctions will be implemented.

If the selling price at export border gates is similar with the dossiers, vouchers and documents but the declared price is low and unreasonable and shows suspicious signs as prescribed at Point b.4, Clause 3, Article 25 Circular No. 38/2015 / TT-BTC which is amended and supplemented in Clause 14, Article 1 of Circular No. 39/2018 / TT-BTC of the Ministry of Finance, the Customs agency shall clarify the suspicious signs, conduct consultancy to refuse declared Customs value and determine customs value, impose tax and fines

If the selling price at the export border gate is consistent with the sales contract, commercial invoices and relevant documents, references and is not suspected of low and unreasonable price, then the customs value declared by enterprises will be accepted.

If the customs declaration is classified into inspection channel (Yellow or Red), but not required for customs value inspection, but the customs officer also finds the customs price declared by the enterprise low and unreasonable and doubtful signs prescribed at Point b.4, Clause 2, Article 25 of Circular No. 38/2015 / TT-BTC, which is amended and supplemented at Clause 14, Article 1 of Circular No. 39/2018 / TT-BTC, Customs officers shall propose the Customs branch’s leaders to approve the customs valuation. The inspection will be carried out as described above.

If the customs declaration is cleared but Customs officers find the declared prices low and unreasonable and doubtful under point b.4, Clause 2, Article 25 of Circular 38/2015/TT-BTC which is amended and supplemented at Clause 14, Article 1 of Circular No. 39/2018/TT-BTC, Customs officers shall make a document which shows the suspicious signs and propose a post-clearance audit at a Customs office.

If in the sale contract, the seller and the buyer agree to exclude export tax from the selling price, the customs value is the selling price in the sale contract, which is consistent with commercial invoices and related documents and vouchers, the customs agency has to determine suspicious signs of declared price and conduct a post-clearance audit at the enterprise’s headquarters to clarify the suspicion.

Post-clearance audit of value of export goods

The General Department of Customs provides detailed guidance on specific cases of post-customs clearance audit of value of export goods

Post-clearance audits at the customs office for export declarations, which are suspected of declared value but not yet examined in detail upon customs process:

Based on the suspicious signs, the customs declarant is requested to submit documents and vouchers to clarify the suspicions and show consistency of declared value with related dossiers, documents. If the customs declarant does not supplement the documents or cannot explain the suspicions or Customs officers discover inconsistencies of the declared value with dossiers, and related documents, the declared value shall be refused and the customs valuation, tax assessment and fines will be levied.

Post-customs clearance audit at the enterprise’s head office:

Based on suspicions of declared customs value, the Customs agency shall inspect accounting books, cost accounting and accounting of export goods’ price from production (or purchasing) until the goods are taken to the export border gate (including domestic tax payment costs, transportation costs, other costs related to the storage, loading and unloading, warehousing, ect), the accounting of sales and profits of enterprises to determine the selling price at the export border gate (if the price of export goods is higher than the selling price, the loss must be accounted for on the system according to the current provision on the accounting regime.

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If the selling price at the export border gate shown on the accounting books and relevant vouchers is not consistent with the declared customs value, then the re-determination of customs value, tax assessment and late payment fines and administrative sanction for tax evasion and frauds shall be implemented. During the post-clearance audit, the Customs agency has to coordinate with state management agencies (such as inland tax agencies, inspection agencies at all levels, police offices, banks) and organisations, individuals related to enterprises which are inspected after customs clearance to verify the constituent elements of the selling price at export border gate. In case of detecting signs of law violations, tax frauds and tax evasion, the Customs shall make records and transfer the case to an investigating agency for further settlement.

Legal basis for declaration and determination of customs value for export goods: based on Clause 2, Article 86 of the Customs Law No. 54/2014 / QH13; Clause 1, Article 8 of the Law on Export and Import Tax No. 107/2016 / QH13; Article 20 Decree No. 08/2015 / ND-CP dated January 21, 2015 of the Government (amended and supplemented in Clause 8, Article 1 of Decree No. 59/2018 / ND-CP dated April 20, 2018 of Government); Article 4 of Circular No. 39/2015 / TT-BTC of March 25, 2015 (amended and supplemented in Clause 15, Article 1 of Circular No. 39/2018 / TT-BTC of April 20, 2018 of the Ministry of Finance ), the customs value of export goods is the selling price of goods at the export border gate, excluding international freight costs and international insurance costs (if any). The selling price of goods at the export border gate is the selling price stated in the sale contract or commercial invoices and costs related to export goods at the export border in accordance with related documents.

By Thu Trang/ Huyen Trang