Importing to Australia: Know the Different Types of SAC Declarations

Importing to Australia: Know the Different Types of SAC Declarations

When you are importing to Australia, it is important to know and understand the different kinds of SAC (Self-Assessed Clearance) declarations. Currently, the Australian Customs Service allows you to make three kinds of SAC declarations. Here is a brief explanation of each type of declaration and when you should use them, for efficient clearance of your goods.

Cargo Report 

The cargo report SAC declaration is made by a cargo reporter on behalf of the importer. It may be communicated to Customs within the reporter’s cargo report. Imported goods which need to be subjected to quarantine conditions could be lodged in a cargo report. The goods may be directed to the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) based on the profile, client details and description of the goods. So the importer does not need to make a separate declaration concerning the quarantine status of the goods.

The cargo reporter must agree to certain statements about the importers goods such as:

* The total value of the goods must not be more than AUD$1000

* The goods described must not be alcohol or tobacco

* The importation of the goods must not violate any restrictions under Commonwealth law.


Short Form Declaration

If you are importing to Australia, you may communicate a short form SAC declaration to Customs. The person who does this for you may not be a licensed broker. In this case, freight forwarders and cargo reporters can lodge the declaration on your behalf. This type of SAC declaration provides an opportunity to inform AQIS about quarantine considerations. You can also use it to provide information when the consignment has alcohol or tobacco, or if the importation of your goods is subject to a condition or restriction under the Commonwealth law.


Full Declaration Format

You need to use the full declaration format on special occasions when you need to pay duties, good service tax and other taxes even though the value is under the AUD$1000 threshold. In this case, you, the importer, needs to be registered in the Integrated Cargo System (ICS). The full declaration format can be accessed through the Import Declaration screen on the ICS. In addition, licensed brokers, who want to give specifications for packing, and select the right inspection actions in line with the Compliance Agreement made with AQIS, must use the full declaration format. In every other case, the use of the full declaration is optional.


That was a brief explanation of the three SAC declaration formats. Now that you know them, you should be able to select the one that will meet your needs, any time you are importing to Australia.

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