Goods imported into Australia are classified under the Customs Tariff Act 1995 and may be subject to customs duty. To ensure consistent treatment with excisable goods manufactured in Australia, this customs duty is at a rate equivalent to excise duty.
Customs import entry procedures are based on importers self-assessing, including determining the correct classification of goods.
If you import tobacco products, you pay customs duty and taxes to the Department of Home Affairs when the products arrive at the Australian border. Their division, Australian Border Force, controls the import of tobaccoExternal Link.
Goods used in excise manufacture
You won't need to pay customs duty on the imported EEGs used in excise manufacture, except if you use biofuel (biodiesel and fuel ethanol), as the new product will be subject to excise duty. The ad valorem (if any) may still be payable depending on the country that the good is imported from. Ad valorem is duty calculated on the customs value of the imported good. Any ad valorem payable will be set out in the Customs Tariff.
You or your broker must lodge all import and warehouse declarations with the Department of Home Affairs using the Integrated Cargo System (ICS) or an approved customs form.
For information on how to import, visit the Australian Border Force website – How to importExternal Link.
What a periodic settlement permission is
A periodic settlement permission (PSP) allows you to:
- deliver EEGs and certain other customable goods into the Australian domestic market
- defer paying customs duty (if applicable) and reporting those goods until the end of the period or the day specified in your PSP.
PSPs and N30s
If you have a PSP, you can deliver the specified goods without first lodging a Nature 30 ex-warehouse import declaration (N30), paying the duty and receiving clearance.
At the end of the settlement period, you must lodge a N30 with the Department of Home Affairs, detailing one or both of the following:
- deliveries you made into the Australian domestic market
- EEGs used in excise manufacture during the settlement period.
You must also pay the applicable customs duty.
You can apply to us for a PSP.
We issue PSPs as part of the customs warehouse licensing process, based on the nature of your operations.
Contact us if you:
- don't hold a customs warehouse licence
- want to pay duty on goods delivered from someone else’s premises.
The settlement period depends on whether you are:
If you're eligible for small business entity concessions, you may be able to report and pay your excise obligations monthly or quarterly.
Under a monthly arrangement, you must report and pay customs duty by the 21st day of the month following delivery of the goods into the Australian domestic market.
For example, if you delivered goods into the Australian domestic market during December 2022, by 21 January 2023, you must:
- report them in your December 2022 Nature 30 (N30) ex-warehouse declaration
- pay the customs duty.
From 1 July 2023, businesses with an aggregated turnover of less than $50 million may be eligible to report and pay their excise obligations quarterly.
Under a quarterly arrangement, you need to report and pay excise duty:
- for a quarter ending on 31 March, 30 June or 30 September – the 28th day after the end of the quarter
- for a quarter ending on 31 December – the 28th day of the February after the end of the quarter.
Example: small business entity concessions
Liquid Trade Co has an existing periodic settlement permission. As a small business with annual turnover of less than $50 million they may be eligible to report and pay excise duty and excise equivalent customs duty quarterly to simplify their reporting and payment requirements.
They apply to lodge their excise duty and excise equivalent customs duty quarterly on 13 January. Their application is approved, which means they report and pay excise duty for the January to March quarter by 28 April.End of example
If you are not eligible for small business entity concessions and you:
- don't deal in transport gaseous fuels, you
- can apply for a specific 7-day settlement period
- must report and pay customs duty on the first day following the end of the 7-day settlement period
- deal in transport gaseous fuels, you
- can apply to us to defer reporting and paying customs duty on your transport gaseous fuels
- must report and pay customs duty on or before the seventh day following the end of the 7-day settlement period.
In all situations, you need to pay customs duty at the same time you lodge your Nature 30 (N30) return with Home Affairs.
To move imported goods (including EEGs) directly from the place of import into the Australian domestic market without first moving the goods to a customs warehouse, you must lodge an Import Declaration (N10) with the Department of Home Affairs. Before the goods are released, you must pay any customs duty owing on the imported goods.
The Australian Border Force have advice on paying an invoiceExternal Link.Paying customs duties, completing declarations and applying to us for permissions for excise equivalent goods (EEGs).