Customs duties

Normal rates and notification requirements

Where are normal customs duty rates for your jurisdiction listed? Is there an exemption for low-value shipments, if so, at what level? Is there a binding tariff information system or similar in place? Are there prior notification requirements for imports?

Customs duty rates are listed in the Customs Tariff (www.aduana.cl/arancel-aduanero-vigente/aduana/2016-12-30/090118.html), which con­sti­tutes a binding tariff information system. There are no exemptions for low-value shipments except for non-commercial goods purchased in duty-free shops (up to US$500) and travellers’ luggage.

There are no requirements of prior notice. However, qualified goods such as chemicals, weapons, animals and others require prior control for their importation: www.aduana.cl/importaciones-de-productos/aduana/2007-02-28/161116.html.

Special rates and preferential treatment

Where are special tariff rates, such as under free trade agreements or preferential tariffs, and countries that are given preference listed?

Special tariff rates are listed in the Customs Tariff and in free trade or other commercial agreements signed by Chile: www.direcon.gob.cl/acuerdos-comerciales/.

Additionally, in 2013, the Chilean Congress passed a law for the elimination of duties for the Least Developed Countries: www.aduana.cl/ley-20-690-eliminacion-aranceles-a-los-pma/aduana/2014-03-07/092144.html.

How can GSP treatment for a product be obtained or removed?

There is no generalised system of preferences. Preferential treatment is granted based on the product and its origin, following the trade agreements to which Chile is a party.

Is there a duty suspension regime in place? How can duty suspension be obtained?

There is a specific regime of admission under which goods may be kept in special facilities, upon prior authorisation by Customs Authority, for up to 90 days. No duties are paid until goods are taken out of the facility. An interest rate is charged in addition to the duties if the goods are kept for more than 30 days.

On the other hand, regulation allows for temporary admission in which no customs duties or reduced rate duties are paid during a specific period. After that period, if the goods have not been re-exported, full duties shall be paid.

Additionally, importers who obtain AEO certification by the Customs Authority, and medium and small companies (ie, S corporations) who import goods that have not previously been subject to suspensive regimes provided for by law, and that meet certain legal requirements, may withdraw foreign goods that are kept in customs storage facilities for their import, without prior payment of duties, taxes, fees and other charges they may cause, except for the payment of storage and mobilisation services. However, such importers must provide an immediate execution bank cheque or insurance policy or an equivalent as a guarantee, in order to ensure the payment of duties, taxes and other charges, and any eventual adjustments and interest that may be accrued. In case the payment is not made within the legal term, said guarantee will be made effective until full payment of the duties, taxes and other charges due, including any adjustments and interests.

Also, foreign goods may be subject to customs deposit destination, for a period of one year, without prior payment of duties and other charges caused by their import, and must be subject to minor processes such as assembling, packaging, finishing, ironing, bagging, packaging or labelling. The requirements and guarantees that the interested parties must fulfil in order to authorise the referred destination will be established by supreme decree.

Challenge

Where can customs decisions be challenged in your jurisdiction? What are the procedures?

There are two main options for challenging customs decisions in Chile.

The first is to submit a claim before the same authority within 15 days of its decision. The authority has 30 days to decide the claim.

The second option is to file a lawsuit before the Tax and Customs courts within 90 days of the customs decision. The procedure is similar to a trial in which the authority must present its defences and there will be a period to present and discuss evidence (including witnesses). The final decision of the court may be challenged before a court of appeal and then, if applicable, before the Supreme Court.