Import & Export

Customs procedures have been simplified and automated through the Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA) which was implemented in 2008 in Cambodia. The measures were implemented under the 2007 Law on Customs and various regulations to reduce customs clearance delay and costs and facilitate faster and more reliable international trade between Cambodia and other countries. Recently, there has been a concerted effort to curtail all illegal goods being imported into the country and there has been an increase in the duty fees.

  1. Is Cambodia a party to regional and bilateral free trade agreements?

Cambodia has been a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) since 1999. Membership in the association allows access to the ASEAN Free Trade Area and it has several bilateral free trade agreements with neighboring countries. By 2015, Cambodia will be economically integrated into the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC). The AEC envisages: (a) a single market and production base; (b) a highly competitive economic region; (c) a region of equitable economic development; and (d) a region fully integrated into the global economy. In 2004, Cambodia was admitted to the World Trade Organization (WTO), which expanded trading opportunities between Cambodia and the rest of the world.

  1. Is a license required for import or export?

Yes. Certain items may need to be licensed and an importer and exporter would be required to have licenses/permits from Ministry of Commerce and General Department of Taxation and in certain circumstances, product-specific documents must be obtained from the relevant Ministries.

  1. Are there restrictions for import or export?

The government may prohibit or restrict the import or export of certain goods that could affect national security; public order and standards of decency and morality; health; national treasures of artistic, historic or archaeological value, or natural resources and waste.

Please note that if your business is an import and export business you will need a patent tax that states that is the business objective.

  1. What duties and tariffs and VAT are required for import and export?

Goods entering or leaving the national customs territory are subject to duties and taxes as specified in the Customs Tariff, which is updated annually. Personal shipments may be subject to duty. The customs territory of the Kingdom of Cambodia includes the land and water, airspace and offshore islands, everything including the Special Economic Zones.

The taxable price of imported goods includes the cost, insurance and freight (CIF) at the border check points of Cambodia. If exported goods are subject to tax then it is FOB (free on board) on the price at the border check points of Cambodia.

The VAT applied to imported goods used or consumed in Cambodia and for services rendered in Cambodia is levied at the current rate of 10% (ten percent). The VAT is 0% (zero percent) for goods exported or services rendered outside of Cambodia.

  1. How are goods cleared through Customs?

Goods are cleared at the border or at internal border check points including airports, seaports and dry ports and in the border areas. Most goods are imported or exported through Phnom Penh International Airport or Sihanoukville seaport, the only deep seaport in Cambodia. The Phnom Penh dry port on the Mekong has been increasingly busier and is now located outside of the city.

Procedures for import and export through the various border check points have been regularized by the HS (Harmonized System). The import or export of goods can be done by the legal representative of the company, or by a broker licensed by Department of Customs and Excise.