Inspection and quarantine procedures for import products are generally complicated and inflexible, usually imposing great monetary and time burden on enterprises engaged in import and export businesses. As an experimental plot for new policies and rules, Shanghai FTZ (“FTZ”), has launched measures to facilitate import inspection and quarantine, which will be adopted nationwide.

It is now at the discretion of enterprise to apply for pre-import inspection for all or partial of its goods either at the entrance of border into FTZ or during storage in FTZ. Where the goods are to be imported from FTZ, no further inspection will be required for those goods surviving the pre-import inspection which process shall save almost half of the time from entry into FTZ to importation from FTZ.

For such goods as imported automobiles, consumption goods, toys, bulk refined oils and liquid chemicals, it is no longer mandatory for enterprises to refer to governmental inspection and quarantine authorities for inspection. Instead, enterprises hereafter have access to qualified third party agencies for such inspection, which will be less time-consuming and costly.

Pre-approval from Ministry of Health of PRC is required for border entrance of products such as blood, tissue, microorganisms before. Such pre-approval is no longer necessary according to the new policy. Meanwhile, approval time for products of high risk is largely shortened. Also, thanks to the annual import volume approval policy, enterprises in FTZ may, according to their actual needs, schedule import of such products with lower expenses.

Except for such products as live animals, fruits, grain food, enterprises now may apply to Shanghai Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau for inspection directly other than General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of PRC as before. The approval process will be reduced by 2 weeks at least while the permit is to be valid for 12 months other than the previous 6 months, thus facilitating entry clearance for animals and plants.

Certificates for trans-shipment goods are now available to enterprises under the new polices, with which such trading preferences as deduction of tariff, simplified clearance treatments and reduced risks of dumping challenges from the country of destination will be within access to those companies,.

The above policies largely simplify the procedures of inspection for enterprises, and to some extent release enterprises from the inconvenience of multiple applications in multiple locations among different governmental departments in the past.