What is the best way to ship goods from China to Cambodia ?
To implement a proper exportation/importation process between the two countries, this question must be well studied first.
Finding information in English about this topic is not an easy duty to accomplish. Because we’re running the Asian market for 10 years, and we have spent several hours studying this subject, we’ve been able to collect all the necessary information, so you can clarify your ideas on the topic.
No matter of your level of experience in the international freight domain, or if you want to achieve a single or numerous transfer between the two countries. This guide will provide you proven information, that will help you increase or start your import/export operation.
Customs clearance in Cambodia
What duties and taxes will I pay for my goods ?
Remark SINO : This is the question everybody working in International Trades asked itself at least once.
Head-on Thailand and Vietnam, China is Cambodia’s first country of importation in both terms of volume and value. Cambodia is apart in the ASEAN economic and political community, which means that its custom barriers and procedures with China have been facilitated. the ASEAN–China Free Trade Area (ACFTA), is the official agreements fixing the customs and tariff barriers between the two territories. It reduced to zero tariff barriers of 90% of the Chinese goods that are imported to Cambodia. Thereby, chances are great that you don’t have to pay duties for your Chinese import into Cambodia.
You can find below some useful pages to find out what tariff barriers are applicable on your products.
To find further information about duties and taxes in ASEAN, please check the official website: ASEAN – CHINA Free trade aera business portal:
For example if you’re willing to import poultry from China to Cambodia, type “poultry” in the Key Words bar, select “China” in the Country of Origin bar and “Cambodia” in the Country of Destination bar. Just like this. It will sort out the rates that are applying on your goods.
Can I be exempted of taxes for goods imported from China?
Remark SINO : You’re surely interested about this topic as you want to reduce the total cost of your transfer.
Yes, you can. In this objective, your supplier should send us the well completed FORM E page. Please be careful, because errors on your FORM E will result in taxes for yourself. We will check it for you, before all process, to be sure.
The Certificate of Origin (CO)
This document certifies that the goods you’re shipping were produced in a specific place and country. It must be approved by a notary public or government. In general, it is divided into GSP certificate of origin (Form A), and numerous regional preferential certificates of origin, and non-preferential certificates of origin.
ASEAN-China Free Trade Certificate of Origin
The China – ASEAN Free Trade Certificate of Origin (FORM E) is currently applying in the ASEAN countries, which are Vietnam, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar and Brunei. It complies with the relevant provisions of the product, if issued by the China – ASEAN free Trade Area of preferential origin confirmation letter (FORM E), exports of goods to the 10 countries of the importing country can enjoy preferential tariff treatment, the average tax rate of up to 5%.
It must be in accordance with the provisions of the good, if issued by the China – ASEAN Free Trade Zone of preferential origin confirmation letter (Form E), products exported to ASEAN member countries, can benefit preferential tariff treatment, the average tax rate at 5% maximum.
The “Trade in Goods Agreement” describes the sample format of the CO that needs to be presented. In Protocol II “Trade in goods agreement”, you must describe what is on the last page.
Note SINO : You’re now informed about the documents you should provide in the aim of paying less taxes. Now we will detail the different freight methods to transfer goods between the two countries.
Customs contact in China
Customs contact in Cambodia
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Remark : If you have one of the following item, you should check directly with our SINO Experts. Some of those items are restricted or even totally prohibited, it is important to anticipate such shipment to avoid any problem.
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SEA FREIGHT FROM/TO CAMBODIA
Ocean freight will be the best deal for you if :
- Your suppliers is located near the Chinese seashore
- The goods you need to ship are greater than 2 CBM
- You’re not in a hurry to receive them
Remark SINO : Sea freight between China and Cambodia will certainly be the best way to ship goods.
In fact, Cambodia’s ports and harbours infrastructures are not well developed. There is only one deep water trade port on the middle of the Cambodian coastline. This port is located in Sihanoukville. All the goods that you’re sending to Cambodia by Sea freight, will enter the territory by this port.
Here is a table below that details the transit times between the major Chinese Sea ports and the port of Sihanoukville:
*Our above transit time are just estimation
SINO Advice : To have precise rates and transit times for your Sea freight from China to Cambodia, don’t hesitate to contact our SINO Experts.
AIR FREIGHT FROM/TO CAMBODIA
Air freight will be the most efficient solution if :
- Your goods are smaller than 2 CBM and 200 kg
- You’re in a hurry to receive/send the goods
Remark SINO : Air freight can be the most adequate solution, it depends on your goods dimensions.
Cambodia possess only 3 International Airports, which is not bad for a 17 million inhabitant country. These airports are:
- Siem Reap-Angkor International Airport
- Sihanoukville International Airport
- Phnom Penh International Airport
Numerous Asian Airlines and a few International Airlines have branches in these airports. There are several weekly flights linking Cambodia with the biggest cities in China.
Remark SINO : Transit time are hard to estimate as it mainly depends of the budget: a direct flight available within a day is possible, but will probably be more expensive. In average, you can expect 2/3 days (export process included)
*Note that the flight does not include the whole logistics process, some parcel could be stuck in customs for X or Y reason.
RAIL FREIGHT FROM/TO CAMBODIA
Rail freight will be the best solution for you, in the case that :
- Your supplier is located in Central China or near the border
- You need to send the goods on the half bottom of the country
Remark SINO : Rail freight between China and Cambodia can be a good alternative to Sea freight. It depends on what your transit should require.
Most of the rail freight coming from China to Cambodia will go through the territories of Vietnam and Laos. In those two countries, the rail network and system are good and reliable. In Cambodia, a lot of progress needs to be made, but since 2010 the government is putting great efforts and investments in the national rail network.
The Chinese border is crossed in two points by trains, first there is the “Friendship pass” between Pingxiang (China) and Đồng Đăng (Vietnam), then there is the bridge between Hekou (China) and Lào Cai (Vietnam). Then the trains are crossing the Indochina peninsula to join Cambodia.
Here is a table of the transit time between major Chinese and Cambodian cities:
Sihanoukville / Phnom Penh
Battambang / Siem Reap / Sisophon
|6 days||5 days|
|Xi’an||9 days||8 days|
|Qingdao||10 days||9 days|
|9 days||8 days|
|Beijing||10 days||9 days|
|Chongqing||7 days||6 days|
|Kunming||5 days||4 days|
|Nanchang||8 days||7 days|
|Harbin||13 days||12 days|
|Changsha||7 days||6 days|
CROSS BORDER FROM/TO CAMBODIA
Road freight will be the most convenient option if:
- Your supplier is located close to the Cambodian border
- The final destination of your goods is in the top half of the country
- You’re not in a hurry to receive your goods
Remark SINO : Because the two countries don’t have common borders and the distance between certain parts of China and Cambodia can be huge, we don’t recommend you to use road freight to ship your goods.
If you’re not filling at least two of criterias mentioned, we unadvise you to choose this method of transport completely.
First of all, roads in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam are not well shaped and in good conditions. Also, tremendous traffic jams can happen near all the big cities. Then It will be almost always more expensive than the other freight solutions. Road freight is reliable only when it’s added with other freight methods, like Rail freight + Trucking, Air freight + Trucking…
Remark SINO : You still have a doubt regarding the method of shipment ? Feel free to fill our online form, one of our SINO Expert will contact you as soon as possible:
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