Key considerations for selling internationally on Amazon

Taxes & Regulations

Now that you have an idea of where you'd like to expand your business, it's time to explore how taxes and regulations might affect your business for each marketplace in which you intend to sell. We recommend that you consult your tax and regulatory advisers before deciding how you will sell in other marketplaces.

Every country has legal and industry requirements concerning sales of products to consumers. In your home marketplace, there may be laws that pertain to intellectual property rights, product safety, environmental concerns, and other applicable requirements. The same is true for all marketplaces. Do your research and understand your responsibilities. Some things to consider include: taxes and customs; intellectual property rights; parallel importation; export controls; marking and labels; environmental, health, and safety issues; and product compliance.

United States tax and regulatory considerations

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires U.S. third-party settlement organizations and payment processors, including Amazon, to file Form 1099-K for U.S. taxpayer sellers who meet both of the following thresholds in a calendar year:

  • More than $20,000 in unadjusted gross sales.
     
  • More than 200 transactions.

IRS regulations require non-U.S. taxpayers to provide Form W-8BEN to Amazon in order to be exempt from U.S. tax reporting requirements. As a result of these and other upcoming regulations, the following sellers are required by Amazon to provide taxpayer identification information to Amazon:

  • All Professional sellers.
  • Individual sellers that exceed 50 transactions in a calendar year, regardless of sales volume.

During your seller account registration, you can provide your information to Amazon using a self-service interview process that will guide you through entering your taxpayer information and validating your W-9 or W-8BEN form. In order to fulfill the IRS requirements as efficiently as possible, answer all questions, and enter all information requested during the interview. You can also find the interview form in Seller Central, under Settings > Account Info > Business Information > Legal Entity > Launch interview wizard (sign-in required).

If you are a U.S. taxpayer, by completing the tax interview in your seller account, you will be providing Amazon the appropriate tax identity in the form of a W-9 or W-8BEN form. For U.S. taxpayers, a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) is required by the IRS for the administration of tax laws. In most cases, your TIN is either an Employer Identification Number (EIN) or a Social Security Number (SSN).

If you are a foreign seller and not a U.S. taxpayer, you will still need to complete the tax interview. The responses you provide to the tax interview questions will create the appropriate tax form on your behalf. IRS regulations require non-U.S. taxpayers to provide Form W-8BEN to Amazon in order to be exempt from U.S. tax reporting requirements.

Other resources
Amazon Tax information tutorial (sign-in required)
IRS guidelines for Payment Card and Third Party Network Transactions

It is the seller’s responsibility to comply with all U.S. customs laws and regulations, including applicable duty and tax requirements. Import duty and taxes are due when importing goods into the United States whether by a private individual or a commercial entity. Some goods are not subject to duty. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) does not require an importer to have a license or permit. Other agencies such as U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), amongst others may require a permit, license, or other certification, depending on what is being imported. See the following links for additional information: www.usda.gov; www.fda.gov; www.cpsc.gov; www.cbp.gov. Additionally, please refer to the following link for tips on how to import to the U.S. https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/197/~/importing---licenses%2Fpermits

 

Note: It is your responsibility to ensure all goods comply with applicable regulatory requirements.

 

Customs entry forms ask for your importer number. This is either your IRS business registration number, or if your business is not registered with the IRS or you do not have a business, your Social Security Number. If you have neither a business tax number nor a Social Security Number, and you are a non-resident of the U.S., you may contact the port where your goods will enter the country and ask them to assign an importer number to you by filing a CBP Form 5106.

Merchandise arriving in the United States by a commercial carrier must be entered by the Importer of Record (IOR). The IOR can be the owner, purchaser, his or her authorized regular employee, or by the licensed customs broker designated by the owner, purchaser, or consignee. Customs brokers are the only persons who are authorized by U.S. customs laws to act as agents for importers in customs matters, including customs clearance of imported goods. Customs brokers are private individuals or firms licensed by CBP to prepare and file the necessary customs entries, arrange for the payment of duties owed, take steps to release goods from CBP custody, and otherwise represent importers (i.e., principals) in customs matters. The fees charged for these services may vary according to the customs broker and the extent of services performed.

To find a customs broker, visit the Ports section of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website. Select the state into which you will be importing, click on the city, then find a link for “Broker listing” below the city information.

Entry of goods into the United States may be made by a non-resident (foreign) IOR. To become a non-resident IOR, the non-resident individual, partnership, or foreign corporation must:

  • Appoint a resident agent: A non-resident (foreign) IOR must appoint a resident agent to receive documents on their behalf. Typically, non-resident IORs designate their customs brokers as their resident agent. The non-resident IOR makes this designation through a written power of attorney. If your goods are being imported via an express courier (DHL, FedEx, UPS), the courier automatically utilizes Customs Brokers to clear your goods on your behalf. Customs Brokers charge for their services, so you may want to contact a few to discuss rates.
     
  • Procure a customs bond: Customs regulations require that the IOR file an import entry bond (also known as a continuous entry bond) guaranteed by a resident surety company. The bond serves two purposes. First, customs can execute against the bond if the IOR fails to pay assessed duties. Second, the IOR is bound by the conditions of the bond for any liquidated damages arising out of its breach of those conditions. The conditions of the entry bond include but are not limited to: payment of duties, taxes and fees; making or completing timely entry; and keeping and producing required documents and evidence related to the importation for five years. Customs keeps a list of approved surety companies. Sureties usually request certain financial information to ensure that the IOR has sufficient resources to pay customs duties and charges. A customs broker may assist with finding a surety for the bond and preparing the bond documents. Customs bonds can also be obtained through a surety licensed by the Treasury department. A list may be found on Treasury's Financial Management Service's website (http://www.fms.treas.gov/c570/c570.html).

    Be aware some brokers will not issue you a bond without you giving them power of attorney to file your entry or entries on your behalf. In lieu of purchasing a bond from a licensed - or corporate - surety, you may pledge cash.
     
  • Obtain an IOR number: An IOR must apply for an IOR identification number from U.S. Customs (this is typically the company’s IRS number for US companies or a number assigned by U.S. Customs for foreign entities). Customs brokers can also assist with obtaining a number, or you may request that an importer number be assigned for you by filling out a CBP Form 5106 and giving it to the CBP entry branch where you will be filing your customs entries.

You should ensure that you have all intellectual property rights (for example, patents, trademarks, or copyrights) necessary for listing your products in the United States. In particular, your products must not be counterfeits. Listing prohibited intellectual property may result in the cancellation of your listings, or the suspension or removal of your selling privileges. Sellers are responsible for ensuring that the products they offer do not infringe the intellectual property of others.

If we determine that the content of a product detail page or listing is prohibited, potentially illegal, or inappropriate, we may remove or alter it without prior notice.

Canada tax and regulatory considerations

In order to sell in Canada, you will need to pay destination duties, taxes and customs clearance fees before your product can be sold to Canadian residents or stored in an Amazon fulfillment center. You or your designated agent must act as Importer of Record and be reported as such on customs declarations.

Any person or entity residing outside of Canada but wishing to import into Canada is required to become a Non-Resident Importer (NRI). An NRI is a foreign-based company, including those residing in the United States, that does not have a permanent presence in Canada but imports into Canada under their own name and business number. The business number (BN) has 15 digits: nine numbers to identify the business, plus two letters and four numbers to identify the program and each account. The BN must be obtained prior to the first importation.

You can register for a business number, or add an import-export account to an existing business number, by calling 1-800-959-5525. You may also obtain a business number by registering online or by completing Form RC1, Request for a Business Number (BN). Send the completed form to your nearest Tax Center. The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) will give you an account free of charge as soon as they receive the form. You must provide your import-export account on your customs documents. This applies to most shipments that enter Canada. You only use your import-export account for importing or exporting.

Most imported goods are subject to tax at a rate of 5 percent. If duty is applicable, duty is added to the value of the goods and that is the amount that tax is charged on (essentially, you also pay tax on duty). It is your responsibility to comply with all Canada Customs laws and regulations, including applicable duty and tax requirements.

When you make a sale on Amazon.ca, the sale may be subject to Goods and Services Tax (GST) or Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) depending on the province of supply.

If you are collecting tax on your sales in Canada, you are required to register for the GST/HST in Canada and remit the amount that is over and above what you originally paid out. The frequency in which you remit this amount is determined by your annual sales in Canada. Lower-volume sellers on Amazon.ca will generally fall in the category of a yearly filer, meaning once a year they are required to report the amount of tax you paid on your imports.

You can register yourself with the Canada Revenue Agency at no charge. After your importer number is issued, you will receive a questionnaire from the Canada Revenue Agency to complete and return. GST registration will be completed approximately six to eight weeks after the form has been submitted but is usually backdated to the date of application to allow you full credit on all imports.

For further information on GST/HST in Canada, visit the Canada Revenue Agency website or call the agency at 1-800-959-5525.

European tax considerations

Selling in Europe provides opportunities to reach many countries from a single account, so it's important that you understand how the European Union applies Value Added Tax (VAT) to orders made online.

As described by the European Commission, the VAT in the European Union (EU) is a consumption tax assessed on the value added to goods and services. It applies to goods and service that are bought and sold for use or consumption in the EU. Although goods that are sold for export or services that are sold to customers abroad are normally not subject to VAT, imports into the European Union are taxed.

Value Added Tax is charged to the buyer as a percentage of the price of the goods sold. The seller of the goods transfers the collected VAT to the revenue authorities but can deduct the amount of VAT it has paid to other “taxable persons” on purchases for business activities.

Learn more about the Value Added Tax (VAT).

Registered VAT traders with a VAT number must show the VAT collected from customers on invoices. Customers will know how much VAT has been paid on the final product, and customers who are registered traders themselves will know the amount that can be deducted from VAT due to tax authorities.

European law requires a minimum standard VAT rate of 15% (or at least 5% for the reduced rate), and actual rates vary between EU countries and between types of products. Consult a particular country’s VAT authority for current VAT rates for the products you want to sell.

When selling products into Europe or from one European country to another, you should be aware that the tax rate can be different from country to country. If you transfer your own goods from one European country to another, or if Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) transfers your goods from a fulfillment center into another country where your products were stored, the transfer may also be treated as a transaction subject to VAT. You are responsible for meeting any VAT obligations that apply, including VAT obligations in the Amazon marketplace locations, the country to which you are delivering or shipping your products, or any other countries.

 

Tip: If you're selling in multiple Amazon European marketplaces, you may need to apply for a unique VAT number in each of the member states in which you sell. Please see the Other resources section for additional VAT information by country.

 

If you import products into the European Union, you may be obliged to pay VAT the moment the goods enter Europe—and in the destination country where you ship the goods. VAT is usually payable in the member state of import by the declarant. You will be liable for the import VAT at the time of delivery of the goods unless you have entered into an arrangement with your supplier for the import VAT to be included in the price of the goods, and for the supplier to discharge the obligation by making a payment to the relevant tax authority.

If you are a company not established in Europe and ship your products from a non-European country directly to a customer in a European country, or you ship your products into a European fulfillment center, please consult your tax advisor to assess any import and VAT obligations you may have.

Goods sold for export to customers outside of Europe may not be subject to European VAT.

External Resource: European Commission

When you sell your products in Europe, you may need to charge VAT. You may need to request a VAT registration number, file VAT returns, and pay the VAT you collected from your customer to the tax authorities.

In most European countries, you can register online on the tax authority’s website for the country where you want to register. Most of these websites provide the VAT information in English. The website will usually provide an online form for registering or a PDF form you can download to complete and return by mail. If there is no provision for registering online, you can find out where to go to register for a VAT number. After you have submitted your request for a VAT number, you may also be sent forms to sign and return through postal mail.

Registering for VAT may lead to a number of associated compliance requirements, including the need to file reports and issue VAT invoices.

Registering for VAT may be required depending on the level of your sales as well as where your inventory is stored. You should consult your tax advisers as to your VAT registration requirements based on your individual seller set up.

When you sell products to customers from your inventory stored in Europe, you may need to file VAT returns in the country from which you ship your products, and you may be required to file VAT returns in the country to which you ship your products (when exceeding the threshold for so-called “distance selling”). Please see the Other resources section for additional VAT information by country.

Distance selling is when you sell goods from one European Union country to customers in another European country where, generally speaking, these customers are private individuals without undertaking any business activity for VAT purposes.

The “distance selling threshold” is a value in Euros established by each country in Europe. If your sales that you ship from one country into another country are greater than that country’s threshold, you must register for VAT in that country. You are responsible to report, collect, and pay the VAT in that country.

Please note that the distance selling threshold is not a sum total of all your sales across Europe. Each European country has a distance selling threshold, and these thresholds vary from country to country. Consult with a tax authority for the country where you want to sell your products to verify the distance selling threshold.

In many European countries, customers expect a VAT invoice. VAT laws in the country where the customer is located may require you to provide a VAT invoice, and customers’ expectations usually go beyond the law. In Germany and Italy, for example, customers often expect an invoice for high-value items.


Tax Webinars by Third-Party Tax Advisers
Third-party tax advisers have hosted webinars on tax issues that cross-border Amazon sellers face. You can review the webinar recordings as well as materials from the webinars below.

E-commerce – 7 Steps to getting VAT right (presented by Accordance VAT): Recording  Materials

International shipments and VAT (presented by Meridian Global Services): Recording  Materials

VAT and international fulfillment options (MCI and EFN) (presented by Meridian Global Services): Recording  Materials

European regulatory considerations

When you import goods into the European Union (EU), you will need to comply with EU customs laws, as well as laws and regulations that are applicable to the EU country of import. Please note that you are not authorized to import your goods in the name of Amazon EU S.à r.l. or any other Amazon subsidiary or affiliate (indistinctly referred to as "Amazon" and its corporate name as an "Amazon name") or to reference Amazon anywhere in your shipping documentation. Otherwise, your shipments may be returned to their origin, abandoned, or destroyed at your cost, at the discretion of the carrier or freight forwarder carrying your goods.

Importation regulations may differ between countries in the EU and will depend on the mode of shipping you choose. Therefore, you should strongly consider hiring a logistics provider, such as a customs broker or freight forwarder, to handle the importation process for your company and help you understand all applicable requirements.

Commercial invoice
When your goods are ready to be shipped from your facility, manufacturer, or distributor, the shipper prepares the commercial invoice. It is critical that the commercial invoice be accurate to avoid delays in clearing customs. The following information must be included on the commercial invoice when importing goods into an EU country:

  • Invoice issue date.
     
  • The complete name and address of the exporter or shipper (seller or manufacturer).
     
  • The shipper's contact name, company name, address, and tax ID number.
     
  • Ship-to address. Provide the legal name of your company, followed by "c/o FBA." Below this, you may use the address of the Amazon fulfillment center to which your goods should be delivered. Amazon does not, however, authorize you to include any Amazon name in this address. Please see the example below.
     
  • Importer of record: Provide the legal name of your company or EU import representative, along with full contact details, Economic Operators' Registration and Identification number (EORI) and VAT registration number for the country of import (example below). Prior to shipping, you should consider ensuring that your company or representative can fulfill all criteria to act as importer of record in the country of import.

Amazon expressly prohibits the use of an Amazon name, including a fulfillment center's name, as the importer of record for any shipment of FBA inventory. Any FBA inventory shipment attempting to make entry with an Amazon name as the importer of record will be refused and returned at the shipper's expense—no exceptions.

Leaving this information blank also can result in your shipment being refused and returned.
 

Example "Ship to/Deliver to" field

Example "Importer of record" field

[Seller legal name] c/o FBA
1401 Rue du Champ Rouge
45770 Saran, France

[Seller legal name] or [Seller's
representative legal name]
1234 Rue de Lyon
9876 Paris, France
EORI: XY123456789
VAT ID: YX87654321

Please note the differences in addresses. The "Ship-to" address includes the Amazon fulfillment center, while the "Importer of record" address includes the seller's or seller representative's registered address.

  • FBA Shipment ID (FBA reference). This is the number you receive when you create the shipment in your Amazon seller account. This ensures that Amazon can quickly identify the shipment as belonging to FBA if customs questions arise. If your FBA Shipment ID in Seller Central does not contain "FBA," please add it in a visible place on the invoice.
     
  • Detailed description of the goods invoiced. Includes, among other required elements, the following:
     
    • Harmonized Tariff Schedule Code (HTS Code)
       
    • Product quantity
       
    • Value of each product. For samples or products with no commercial value, a nominal or fair-market value must be stated for customs purposes
       
    • Total value of all products in a shipment 
       
  • Currency of the transaction

Additional information may also be required. These requirements are subject to change. It is your responsibility to determine and comply with import requirements.

Depending on the type of product, there may be additional certificates and licenses required for import. These can include a Declaration of Conformity, test reports or leather certificates.

Please note that the document requirements listed above are in addition to the system-generated document requirements specified in the Shipment Creation Workflow.

Please check with your logistics provider or customs broker to ensure that you have the complete documentation needed to import into the EU destination country.

Shipping best practices
Amazon fulfillment centers have requirements for the shipments they receive, including the size of the pallets and the type of truck that can deliver to the fulfillment center. The How to Ship Inventory to Amazon guidelines provide information needed for preparing your shipment to an Amazon fulfillment center. Paying attention to these requirements and best practices will help avoid delays in getting your inventory to the fulfillment center and into your customers' hands.

Using standard postal services
Using postal services such as China Post, Royal Mail, Parcelforce, and Deutsche Post to send your shipments to Amazon fulfillment centers is not recommended. Postal services may have different importer of record requirements for their shipments than for freight or express carrier shipments. It is possible that by using postal services to ship your goods, you could not ship to an Amazon fulfillment center as the IOR. If you are considering a postal service as a shipping option, you should consider sending the shipment to the address of your representative in the country of import and, after the shipment is delivered, forward the goods to the Amazon fulfillment center address. Prior to shipping, you may want to check with the postal service that your company or representative can be the importer of record.

For additional information regarding FBA imports and exports, please read the Importing and exporting inventory page.

You should ensure that you have all intellectual property rights (such as patents, trademarks, or copyrights) necessary for listing your products in Europe or selling them cross-border within Europe. You may need to have the permission of the brand owner to sell their products in a given European member state in order to avoid an infringement of intellectual property rights (as in the case where your license to the intellectual property is only valid for a specific country). In particular, your products must not be counterfeit or illegal parallel imports.

You should investigate the law governing intellectual property for every country where you want to list your products because your rights in intellectual property may only be valid for a particular country.

In addition, you may want to protect your own intellectual property in Europe.

Trademark owners may be able use their trademark rights to prevent re-sale in the European Economic Area (EEA) of genuine branded goods sourced from outside the EEA 2, even if the non-EEA seller has purchased the goods outside the EEA from an authorized distributor or the trademark owner.

However, the trademark owner’s rights may generally be “exhausted” (for instance, the trademark owner can no longer rely on its trademark rights) in respect of goods placed within the EEA by the trademark owner or with the trademark owner’s "consent."

The "consent" must in principle relate to each individual product imported and sold in the EEA. Trademark rights may therefore generally not be exhausted simply by the proprietor having consented to the sale of other, identical branded goods within the EEA.

Even when the goods have been placed in the EEA by the trademark owner or with the trademark owner’s consent, the trademark owner may have "legitimate reasons" for objecting to the re-sale of the branded goods.

Situations that may qualify as “legitimate reasons” include, but may not be limited to any of the following:

  • The branded goods have been altered by the reseller.
     
  • The branded goods have been repackaged by the reseller.
     
  • The reseller’s advertising of the goods in some way denigrates the goods or the trademark.

Whether trademark owners may use their trademark rights to prevent re-sale in the EEA depends on the specific circumstances of each case, and we strongly recommend that you consult legal counsel to determine whether your products may be legitimately sold in the EEA.

The “CE” mark is a mandatory conformance mark on many products (such as low-voltage equipment, medical devices, toys, personal protective equipment, and so on). By attaching the “CE” marking, the manufacturer declares that the product is in conformity with the requirements of the applicable European directives.

There are many other marks and labels in Europe (for example, textiles, products in contact with food, recycling, and so on), which you may be required to display on your products or packaging. Often product labelling is required to be in the language of the European member state where the product is sold.

Chemicals – REACH/CLP
REACH is the European regulation on chemicals and their safe use. It deals with the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemical substances. Under the REACH regulation, one of the things manufacturers and importers may be required to do is to gather certain information on the properties of the chemical substances in their products, and to register the information in a central database run by the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA).

In addition to REACH, the Regulation for Classification, Labeling, and Packaging of Substances and Mixtures (CLP Regulation) may apply to your products. The CLP Regulation incorporates the classification criteria and labeling rules agreed at the United Nations level, the so-called Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). GHS is based on the principle that the same hazards should be described and labeled in the same way all around the world.

Electrical and electronical equipment – WEEE / RoHS
If you are selling electrical or electronic equipment, you may be subject to the European legislation concerning Restrictions of the Use of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) and/or the collection and recycling of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE).

The following are examples of requirements in the WEEE regulations that you may be subject to:

  • Displaying the “crossed-out wheeled bin” symbol on your products. The symbol indicates that the product should not be disposed of as normal waste, but rather in specific recycling centers.
     
  • Joining an authorized WEEE collection and recycling scheme in any European member state in which you sell applicable products.

Batteries
If you sell batteries or products that contain batteries, you may be subject to the Battery Directive. The Battery Directive imposes specific obligations on producers and distributors of batteries.

The following are examples of requirements you may be subject to:

  • Displaying the “crossed-out wheeled bin” symbol on your batteries. The symbol indicates that the battery should not be disposed of as normal waste, but rather in specific recycling centers.
     
  • Joining an authorized battery collection and recycling scheme in any European member state in which you sell your batteries.

Packaging and packaging waste
Packaged products you sell in Europe must comply with the European Packaging and Packaging Waste regulations.

The following are examples of requirements you may be subject to:

  • Joining an authorized packaging collection and recycling scheme in any European member state in which you sell your products.
     
  • Displaying recycling symbols on your packaging (for example, the “green dot” symbol).

Plugs and voltage
Countries in Europe use different types of plugs—for instance, the U.K. 3-pin rectangular plug and the continental European 2-pin round plug. In addition, products you import into Europe might work on a different voltage.

Please ensure that you comply with the regulations on plugs and voltage in any European member state in which you list your products. In particular, your customers should be able to safely use your products. For more information regarding what plugs and sockets are accepted in EU fulfillment centers, visit the Electrical Goods Requirements: Plugs and Sockets help page (Seller Central Europe account required).

Toys
The European Toys Safety Directive requires, among others things, that it must be possible to use a toy without any danger to one’s health or safety during the toy’s foreseeable and normal period of use. You may also be required to place warnings on the products that specify the appropriate conditions and limitations of use.

Medical devices
Medical devices range from simple products like bandages to the most sophisticated life-supporting products. If your product is considered a medical device, you may be subject to the European Medical Devices Directive. The Directive requires, among other things, that medical devices shall not compromise the safety and health of patients, or users and other persons when properly implanted, maintained, and used.

Pharmaceuticals and cosmetics
Pharmaceuticals and cosmetics are subject to various regulations in Europe, including special labeling and packaging requirements. The regulations are only partially harmonized. For example, a product may be sold over-the-counter in some European member states, while in others it may only be legally sold in pharmacies.

Food
Food and food products are subject to many regulations in Europe. European food regulations in particular aim at establishing high-quality standards for food and food product hygiene, animal health and welfare, and plant health, and prevent the risk of contamination from external substances.

European food regulations include, among many other things, the following:

  • Specifying rules on appropriate labeling for food products. Often product labeling is required to be in the language of the European member state where the product is sold.
     
  • Establishing mandatory refund and recycling schemes for beverage packaging in several European member states.

More: Restricted products for import into the United Kingdom

Please note that these consumer rights are described for illustrative purposes only and do not constitute any legal advice or substitute for any contractual obligation that you may have agreed upon with Amazon or directly with the consumer. To learn more about rules that apply to international sellers, check out Global Selling International Seller Rules here.

Rights of cancellation
With some exceptions, consumers in the European Union have the right to cancel a purchase of a product bought online within 14 days of receiving the final item of the order, if they purchased multiple items together that were delivered separately. Even when there is no error from your side, you must refund the item and the shipping costs. You may not have to refund all costs unless one of the following is true:

  1. There is an error on your side.
     
  2. You agreed to bear all costs for the consumer.
     
  3. You failed to disclose or inform the customer about the costs that you are legally required to disclose.

For example, you must refund the normal cost of sending the item to the consumer but not any extra costs for services that the customer chooses, such as expedited delivery or gift-wrapping. Similarly, when you expressly inform the consumer, you don't have to bear the cost of returning the product to you.

Please note that these consumer rights are in addition to any contractual return rights that you may have agreed upon with Amazon (e.g. 30-day return guarantee) or directly with the consumer.

Legal warranty
In the EU, you are required by law to give customers a warranty stating that the products you sell are free from faults and are as advertised (i.e., conformant with the contract). Standards exist to assess when products do not conform to the contract. If the products do not conform, customers can request a free repair, replacement, or refund following a sale. The warranty period will vary depending on the country. Most EU countries provide for a minimum period of two years from the date the customer received the product. The United Kingdom, however, requires a "reasonable time" following the sale that will vary depending on the product and its value.

The period during which you can receive a warranty-related claim from a customer also varies by country. For example, parties to a contract in England and Wales have up to six years to bring a claim from the date on which their rights were infringed; a customer thus may claim that a product is faulty six years after receiving it.

Japanese tax and regulatory considerations

This section covers tariff and duty rates, prohibited goods, and non-residential requirements for sellers interested in selling in Japan.

It is the seller’s responsibility to comply with all Japanese customs laws and regulations, including applicable duty and tax requirements. Any goods imported into Japan are subject to the Import Consumption Tax. Some goods are subject to customs duties. The harmonized classification schedule in the Customs Tariff Law sets forth both the classification and the corresponding customs duty rate of particular products. The amount of consumption tax payable on imported goods is calculated on the basis of the customs value of the goods plus customs duty payable and, where applicable, other excise taxes payable. When certain kinds of goods, such as liquor, tobacco products, petroleum, and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), are imported into Japan, excise taxes may also be imposed as stipulated in the respective law concerned. In these cases, the amount of taxes payable is calculated based on the quantities of the imported goods.

Other resources

Japan strictly forbids the importation of certain goods. Please refer to Import Procedures for additional information.

A Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) seller who lives outside of Japan (nonresident) and would like to import goods into an Amazon Japan fulfillment center for storage and order fulfillment must first designate a proxy (attorney)/agent to the Director-General of Customs allowing the agent to import on the seller’s behalf. This must be accomplished in advance of any importations. In general, any person who is a resident of Japan can be appointed as the proxy/agent, but this person is obliged to complete the import declarations and pay duties and taxes on behalf of the non-resident seller. Neither Amazon nor any of its entities in Japan may act as the importer of record on the customs declaration—only the FBA seller or their designated agent. Please see Other resources in the ship and fulfill section for companies that can help guide you through the import process in Japan.

It is the seller’s responsibility to comply with all Japanese customs laws and regulations.

When you import goods into Japan, you will need to comply with all Japanese customs laws and regulations. When importing goods into Japan, please note that you are not authorized to do so in the name of Amazon or to show Amazon as the declarant, importer of record, or consignee on any customs documentation.

Visit Japan Customs for useful information regarding importing goods to Japan.

 

Note: The listed price of your products must include all applicable charges and taxes.

Electrical Appliance and Material Safety Law (PSE Mark)
When importing electrical appliances in Japan, the product must comply with the standard under the Electrical Appliance and Material Safety Law. This law prevents the sale of hazardous products and any electrical appliance that are considered a safety hazard. The importer has the obligation to conform to this law and attach the PSE Mark, which acts as proof of conformity, onto the confirmed products.

Visit Electrical Appliance and Material Safety Law for more information.

Technical Regulations Conformity Certification for Radio Equipment (Technical Conformity Mark)
To sell products that emit radio frequencies, the product must conform to the technical regulations specified in the Radio Law, and the product must have a Technical Conformity Mark, which acts as proof that the product is in accordance with the law.

Visit the Radio Use website for more information.

Consumer Products Safety Act
Below are some examples of products that may be subject to the Consumer Product Safety Act and require a PSC mark:

  • Pressure cookers and autoclaves for home use
     
  • Helmets (automotive, cycle, and so on)
     
  • Baby beds
     
  • Climbing ropes
     
  • Portable laser-applied equipment
     
  • Hot water circulators for bathtubs
     
  • Oil water heaters
     
  • Oil bath boilers
     
  • Oil heaters
     
  • Indoor instantaneous gas water heaters (for city gas and LP gas)
     
  • Bath boilers with indoor gas burners (for city gas and LP gas)
     
  • Forced-flue type oil warm air furnaces
     
  • Built-in electric dishwashers
     
  • Electric dryers for bathrooms
     
  • Electric fans
     
  • Electric air conditioners
     
  • Ventilators
     
  • Washing machines
     
  • CRT-based televisions

Download Outline of the Consumer Products Safety Act (PDF) for more information.

The Household Goods Quality Labeling Law
The Household Goods Quality Labeling Law provides labeling obligations in order to enable consumers to make informed buying decisions when purchasing household goods. The law establishes what must be displayed on product labels in order to provide appropriate information for the product. The law applies to textile goods, plastic manufactured goods (such as water purifiers, baby feeding bottles), electrical appliances, and miscellaneous manufactured goods sold in Japan.

Other resources

Food Sanitation Act and food labeling
When you sell food products and products intended for infants and small children (such as feeding bottles, eating utensils, plates, and toys), you must comply with the Food Sanitation Act, which ensures food safety for the public.

Visit the Food Sanitation Act for more information.

Also, any food products sold in Japan must have proper labeling to inform the consumer on information such as, but not limited to, ingredients, origin of ingredients, nutritional information, transfatty acid, and transfat labeling.

Visit Consumer Affairs Agency, Government of Japan for more information.

Pharmaceutical Affairs Act
Pharmaceutical products and medical devices sold in Japan must comply with the Pharmaceutical Affairs Act. Visit http://law.e-gov.go.jp (Japanese) or consult with a professional before selling these products.

Intellectual property rights
Please ensure that you do not infringe intellectual property rights of other parties when you sell your products in Japan. You are prohibited from selling counterfeit or illegal parallel imports. You may also want to consider protecting your own intellectual property rights in Japan.

Visit the Japan Patent Office for more information.

International trade laws

It is illegal to sell, import, or export products that are prohibited by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora.

Mexico tax and regulatory considerations

This page provides an overview of tariff and duty rates, nonresident importer requirements, prohibited products, and certain other applicable regulations for selling in Mexico. If you will be importing your merchandise into Mexico, you will need to pay destination duties, taxes, and customs-clearance fees before your product can be sold to Mexican customers or stored in an Amazon fulfillment center in Mexico.
 
Please note that Amazon and its fulfillment centers will not serve as the importer of record (IOR) for any shipment of Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) inventory. Listing Amazon as the IOR on inbound FBA shipments to Mexico or failing to specify an IOR may result in loss of selling privileges. In addition, noncompliant shipments may be refused and returned at the shipper's expense.
 
This page is not intended to constitute customs or legal advice. We recommend that you consult with a customs broker or legal adviser before selling in Mexico.

Sellers' next steps generally depend on whether or not they're residents of Mexico for tax purposes.

Residents: Sellers acting as importer of record on their own shipments must have a tax number (Registro Federal de Contribuyentes or "RFC") and must generally be residents of Mexico for income-tax purposes. Resident importers must be registered and listed on the Importers' Registry (Padrón de Importadores) of the Secretariat of Finance and Public Credit (Hacienda). Certain products may require additional registrations for import. Sellers should consult a customs broker, legal adviser, or both in Mexico to identify the appropriate solution for their business.

Additional guidance that may be helpful for sellers in the U.S. and other jurisdictions can be found on the U.S. Department of Commerce Commercial Service's "Doing Business in Mexico" page: export.gov/mexico/doingbusinessinmexico/index.asp.

Nonresidents: Most nonresidents have three options for importing goods into Mexico: (i) listing the end customer (where appropriate) as the importer of record, (ii) engaging a third party authorized to import into Mexico, or (iii) incorporating and registering before tax authorities a local Mexican entity to act as the importer. In each case, the party acting as the importer must have an RFC. Because each situation is different, sellers should consult with a customs broker, legal adviser, or both to identify a solution most appropriate to their business.

As noted above, Amazon and its fulfillment centers will not serve as the importer of record for any shipment of FBA inventory.

A "pedimento de importación" (import declaration) must be filed to obtain customs clearance. A carrier or customs broker often files this on the importer's behalf. The pedimento generally includes information on taxes and governmental fees, such as prescreening fees, customs processing fees, countervailing duties, value-added tax, and import or export duties.

The following documents are required for filing the pedimento:

Commercial invoice: The invoice documents the sale for export to the country of importation. Thus, the invoice is essential to determine the transaction value of the goods. Mexican customs regulations are detailed concerning the information that the invoice must contain. Foreign sellers or shippers must exercise care in preparing invoices.

  • Place where the invoice was issued
     
  • Date on which the invoice was issued
     
  • Invoice number
     
  • Seller's name
     
  • Seller's full mailing address
     
  • Importer's name
     
  • Importer's full mailing address (no P.O. box)
     
  • Detailed description of the goods (including grade or quality; avoid using codes)
     
  • Quantities in weights and measures
     
  • Unit prices
     
  • Total value of the invoice (and currency of such amount)
     
  • Country of origin
     
  • Commercial terms (e.g., CIF or FOB)
     
  • Seller's tax-identification number
     
  • Identification numbers—such as serial, part, and model numbers—of each good or package

We suggest you contact your customs broker or legal adviser to understand what information should be included for your products.

The invoice is accepted in Spanish, English, and French, in accordance with Mexican law and regulations. Invoices in any other language must be translated into Spanish within the same invoice or in a letter attached to it.

Transportation documents: The bill of lading, endorsed by the transport company, is also attached to the customs declaration. These documents normally prove the date on which the goods entered the customs territory.

Certificates, licenses and permits: If any of the goods are subject to import controls, the appropriate certificates, licenses and permits must be included with the documentation.

Depending on the circumstances, certain additional documents may be required. These can include: proof of origin (for example, if preferential duties or countervailing duties apply); document(s) demonstrating guarantee of payment of additional applicable duties (for undervalued goods); nontariff regulations and certificates of safety/standards compliance (if applicable); and serial numbers, part numbers, brand, model numbers, or other information that may be needed to identify the goods. For more information, check with your customs broker or legal adviser.

All shipments entering Mexico should have a tracking number.

 

Merchandise imported into Mexico must be identified with the proper, eight-digit Mexican tariff classification number. This will determine the duty rate and establish any applicable nontariff barriers.

For information on Mexico's tariff schedule see the Sistema Integral de Información de Comcercio Exterior website (Spanish language only) or consult with your customs broker, carrier, or legal adviser.

Additional taxes and surcharges may apply, including:

  • Value-added tax (IVA): Customs authorities collect a value-added tax (VAT) upon entry of the goods into Mexico;
     
  • Special tax (IEPS): Applies to imports of certain products (e.g., alcoholic beverages) and can range from 25% to 160%;
     
  • Customs processing fee (DTA); and
     
  • Prescreening fee (prevalidación): Fee charged by Mexican customs (or sometimes by private companies that customs engages) in connection with validation of the information in pedimentos before submission to customs.

The price quoted to the customer at checkout should include all taxes and duties. The customer should not be obligated to pay any additional duties or taxes at the time of the delivery of the order or at customs clearance.

"Normas Oficiales Mexicanas" and "Normas Mexicanas": Technical barriers to trade arise from the application of technical regulations or standards. Generally, technical regulations are mandatory, and governments establish, monitor, and enforce them. Standards, on the other hand, are voluntary and take effect in a given market because the parties concerned agree to use them. Mexico has both of these types of technical barriers: "Normas Oficiales Mexicanas" (NOM) are technical regulations. "Normas Mexicanas" (NMX) are voluntary standards, intended for use as references. In many countries, technical regulations and standards are complementary. In Mexico, however, technical regulations are fundamental.

Compliance: Foreign companies must meet Mexican product technical regulations as a condition for sale of products into Mexico. Product-safety NOMs require Mexican importers to present a NOM certification to Mexican customs along with all other import documents. This certificate attests that the product has been verified and found to have complied with the applicable NOM. A product that is subject to a NOM cannot be imported into Mexico unless it has been certified as complying with the NOM. Samples of goods may be imported in order to be tested by approved laboratories.

For more information, contact the Ministry of Economy Standards Division: www.economia.gob.mx/en (search for "normatividad empresarial" or "normas"; Spanish and English languages only).

The MX NOM Mark, a product-safety mark for Mexico, is a requirement for the majority of electronic items. It certifies that the product meets the safety requirements contained in the NOMs. For certification purposes, the MX NOM Mark must appear on the product unless an alternate location on packaging is specified in writing as permitted by law. It is strongly recommended that the shippers ensure their products are NOM-compliant.

Technical standards for labeling include the following:

  • General labeling of consumer goods (NOM-050-SCFI-1994)
     
  • Labeling of food and non-alcoholic beverages (NOM-051-SCFI-1994)
     
  • Labeling of alcoholic beverages (NOM-142-SSA1-1995)
     
  • Labeling of textiles, clothing, and accessories (NOM-004-SCFI-1994)
     
  • Labeling of leather and artificial materials with such appearance, footwear, and products made of these materials (NOM-020-SCFI-1997)
     
  • Labeling of electrical and electronic products, as well as household appliances (NOM-024-SCFI-1998)
     
  • Labeling of paints, varnishes, and similar goods (NOM-003-SSA1-1993)

For more information, check with your customs broker or legal adviser or visit these links:

English-language translations of common NOMs are available for a fee from Mexicanlaws.com and other third-party sources.

The import or export of certain fish, seeds, vegetable products, chemicals, reptile skins, and archaeological or historical artifacts is prohibited under Mexican law. We suggest that you contact your customs broker or legal adviser before shipping any inventory to understand any restrictions that may apply.

The customs administration can suspend release of counterfeit trademarked and pirated copyrighted goods into circulation. A rights-holder suspecting import of illegal goods can apply with appropriate Mexican authorities to take action.

  1. The seller is the holder of the trademark rights.
     
  2. The seller is authorized to use and distribute the brand.
     
  3. Goods have no physical branding information.
     
  4. Goods have a physical branding but are not registered with the Industrial Property Mexican Institute (IMPI).

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