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Refund of customs import duty for Chinese imports

Deloitte Chinese Services Group, Refund of customs import duty for Chinese importsIf you import goods from China you may be eligible for a refund of the customs duty you have paid.

Refunds may be claimed going back up to four years, but in some circumstances, may be for a shorter period. For example, a Tariff Concession Order (TCO) may have been made for a particular product at some stage during those four years, reducing the duty from 5% to nil. If your goods met the description of the TCO but your business has continued to pay 5%, you would be entitled to a refund from the date the TCO was made.

How Deloitte’s Customs and International Trade team can help you

After you give us the authority, we download your customs import data history from the Australian Customs & Border Protection Service. We have been able to help many clients identify where customs duty has been overpaid and have successfully claimed refunds going back up to four years.

What is the point of the exercise?

If you are an importer, successfully claimed refunds should improve your net profit position.

What do we do?

We find customs duty concessions which may have been granted to a competitor and which were available to you to claim. If these concessions were overlooked at the time your goods were declared to Customs, you may be entitled to a refund of overpaid duty.

Why Deloitte?

Deloitte is successful because:

  • As independent advisors, we review your import data to maximise your benefits
  • Where there is doubt about your entitlement to a concession, we apply for a binding ruling from Australian Customs before claiming refunds
  • Our team has over 40 years’ expertise in the field of customs duty concessions.

How do we do it?

We get an ‘authority to act’ from you, download your import data from Australian Customs, undertake an analysis and quantify the size of the potential refund. We then go through the results of this preliminary analysis with you. When you decide to proceed, we can help you lodge the relevant information to obtain the refund.

Is this relevant to my industry?

If you are in one of the following industry sectors, this opportunity is relevant to you:

  • Consumer and industrial products
  • Mining, mineral and resources (but not if you use the Enhanced Project By-law Scheme as your only duty concession), including service providers
  • Oil, power and gas
  • Hire companies
  • Motor vehicle parts and accessories outlets
  • Telecommunications (to a lesser degree).


  • Consumer goods importer – we identified $200,000 in customs duty refunds for a duty concession on one product line alone, as well as additional refunds for free trade agreement concessions that had not been claimed. Combined with duty refunds for transfer pricing adjustments which reduced the declared customs values for the last three financial years, the combined refunds were approximately $1.3 million
  • Retail chain – we identified customs duty refunds of approximately $800,000 on products imported for their weekly specials lines (non-food and non-alcohol products only)
  • Jewellery importer – we identified refunds of $50,000 where free trade agreement concessions had not been claimed.

Our fees

There is no up-front charge for this service. If we identify a potential refund during our preliminary analysis, we negotiate a suitable fee structure for managing the refund process.


Michael Roche
Principal - Customs & International Trade, Sydney
Telephone: +61 (0) 2 9322 5341

Jon Graham

Partner - Customs & International Trade, Sydney
Telephone: +61 (0) 2 9322 7421


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