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Import/Export Procedures of Brunei

Trade Policy

Brunei adopts an open trade policy and views free trade agreements (FTAs) as a vital part of its foreign trade policy. To maximise the potential of its free trade and open trading regime, the Brunei government has secured the following FTAs:

Brunei’s major exports are crude oil and gas, accounting for more than 90% of merchandise exports and key export markets include Japan, Korea, India, Australia and Indonesia. Brunei’s major imports include manufactured goods, machinery and transport equipment, which are sourced from Malaysia, Singapore, China, the US and Korea. For a full analysis on trade policy, see the Brunei Market Profile on the HKTDC website.

Regulations

Imports and exports are regulated under various Customs Orders by the Royal Customs and Excise Department (RCED) under the Ministry of Finance.

Import and Export Requirements

Only companies registered to do business in Brunei can export or import goods. Generally, the following procedures should be followed when importing into or exporting from Brunei:

1. Registration with RCED (through its Customer Services Counter) – this is free of charge and copies of business certificates/certificates of incorporation and evidence of residency in Brunei (e.g. Smart Identify Card) is needed.

2. Application for permit of controlled goods – this is required from the appropriate responsible agency before importing/exporting. The responsible agency can be found on the website of RCED. Usually these permits are free of charge.

3. Complete an online Customs Import/Export Declaration. All Customs Import/Export Declarations must be submitted via the Brunei Darussalam National Single Window (BDNSW). With BDNSW, multiple trade-related applications are consolidated into single applications to be submitted and approved electronically.

4. Payment of Dutiable Goods. Duties can be paid either at the Customs Payment Counter or as a Bill Payment over Bank’s Channel.

5. Inspection and Clearance. For every importation/exportation, the Approved Customs Import/Export Declaration and supporting documentation (e.g. invoice, permits, bill of lading) are required.

To encourage the use of Muara port, Brunei’s major deep-water port, the government has reduced a number of fees related to import/export trade, including the reduction by more than one-third the charge on laden containers entering the port. Furthermore, charges on stevedoring, lift on/lift-off and wharfage fees are all reduced by similar proportions, while the free storage time for containers in the port has been increased from 48 to 120 hours.

Prohibited Items

Prohibited goods are listed on the website of RCED and they include weapons, dangerous narcotics, stone and gravel.

Tariff Classification and Import/Export Duties

Brunei adopts the Harmonised System (HS) and duties are collected on imports only. In addition to import duty, some imports are subject to excise tax (e.g. gasoline, electrical appliances).

Brunei has very low import tariffs and its average Most Favoured Nation (MFN) applied tariff was 1.2% in 2015 (WTO, 2016). All tariff rates are documented in the Brunei Darussalam Tariff and Trade Classification, 2017.

Product Standards and Labelling Requirements

Product Standards

Brunei adheres to a number of international standards, including the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) regimes. Brunei’s National Standards Centre of the Energy and Industry Department is responsible for facilitating and regulating matters related to Standards and Conformance.

Labelling Requirements

Basic packing and marking requirements are generally required for all categories of products, but more specific requirements for food products are required, which can be found on the website of the Ministry of Health.

 

A Practical Guide to Doing Business in Brunei

  1. Regulatory Environment
  2. Establishing a Presence
  3. Intellectual Property Protection
  4. Staff Recruitment
  5. Tax Considerations
  6. Import/Export Procedures
  7. Further Information


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Content provided by Picture: HKTDC Research
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