The Stakes of Customs Valuation

Along with the classification of goods and the determination of their Origin, the valuation of merchandise is essential to the application and calculation of customs tariffs.

All customs administrations of the current WTO Members value imported goods in accordance with the provisions of the WTO Customs Assessment Agreement (including the former GATT Article VII and Tokyo Round Valuation Code), adopted in 1994. The Agreement is intended to provide a single, fair, uniform and neutral customs valuation system for imported goods. The Agreement essentially bases the customs value on the transaction value of imported goods, i.e., the price paid or payable for imported goods, if any, after certain costs and fees adjustments. 90% of trade is valued on the basis of the transaction value method.

If exchanged goods are found to be undervalued or overvalued, the importer expose itself to serious legal repercussions as penalties. This is why it is important to assess goods correctly. To facilitate the work of customs stakeholders, the WCO brings together on the platform the texts of the Agreement and its implementation as well as additional documents such as the list of decisions taken by the Committee on Customs Valuation, instruments prepared by the Technical Committee (Case studies, Advisory Opinions and more) as well as the list of WTO members. Furthermore, to simplify the search for information regarding valuation, a search bar and an alphabetical and subject index are provided.