International Freight Forwarder and Customs Broker Based in China

How to Export and Shipping Goods to China

Air, Sea and Rail Freight Export Services to China

Our logistics company has built a reputation for excellence in the industry by providing specialized air and sea freight services. We understand the importance of timely and efficient delivery of goods, which is why we offer an express transport service for your shipment needs in China. Additionally, we also offer an international removal service at competitive prices, ensuring that your goods are transported safely and securely to their destination. Our team of experienced professionals is dedicated to providing exceptional customer service and will work closely with you to ensure that all of your logistics needs are met. Trust us to handle all of your logistics needs and experience the difference that comes with working with a company that truly cares about your success.


All About Shipping Goods To China

The Asian territory boasts a wealth of top-ranked port infrastructure, including a network of container ports that rank among the top 20 in the world. This has led to the growth of global maritime transport through streamlined shipments and deliveries. Leading the way is Shanghai, with a total of 40.25 million TEUs in 2017, followed by other major ports such as Shenzhen, Ningbo-Zhoushan, Hong Kong, Guangzhou, Qingdao, Tianjin, Xiamen, and Dalian.

In addition to its strong maritime transport, Asia has also invested heavily in airport infrastructure for air freight shipments. China, in particular, has seen significant growth in this area, with Hong Kong airport handling the majority of cargo flights to and from the country. Shanghai and Beijing airports are also rapidly developing their air cargo capabilities.

The new spearhead of Chinese logistics, rail freight, has also seen an increase in 2018 with a total volume growth of 10.7% to 3.69 billion tons. This was due to the government’s vast road and rail transport development program, “the new silk road” (one belt, one road), which has built a network of infrastructure across Asia, Europe, and Africa, greatly boosting the volume of shipments between Asia and Europe, as well as Asia and Africa.

The main China Europe freight train route through Central Asia Source Chen and Mardeusz


The Asia North America liner shipping routes considered in the computational


The main means of transport to China

Ten ports in mainland China are among the top 30 container ports in the world. The port of Shanghai is by far the busiest in the world. The turnover of the Port of Shanghai exceeded 40 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) in 2018 (latest data available). In 2018, the country shipped 249.8 million TEUs, an increase of 5.3% over the previous year.

Road freight is the main mode of freight transport in China. In 2018, China had one of the largest road networks in the world. It measured about 4.8 million kilometres, second only to the United States. In 2019, the total volume of goods transported by road in China decreased. Nevertheless, in 2019, the volume of road freight traffic in China amounted to nearly six trillion tonne-kilometres.

In 2019, China’s air freight volume amounted to about 26.32 billion tonne-kilometres. China currently has 238 civil aviation airports, including the second busiest airport in the world, Beijing.

Railways remain the main mode of transport and the cheapest option for long-distance freight. In 2019, China’s rail freight volume amounted to 3.02 trillion tonne-kilometres. The country’s state railways carried 299 million tonnes of freight in May 2020, an increase of 11.15 million tonnes from the previous year, according to data from China State Railway Group Co Ltd. There are currently a total of 141,400 km of railway lines in China, including 36,000 km of high-speed lines, the largest in the world, according to figures from China State Railway Group. China aims to have about 200,000 km of railways by the end of 2035, including about 70,000 km of high-speed lines.


Development of rail transport through the New Silk Roads

The Chinese government’s “new silk road” initiative has not only led to the development of a vast network of transportation infrastructure, but it has also created opportunities for increased trade and economic growth. As part of this initiative, the government has signed 16 free trade agreements with 24 countries, including Pakistan, Peru, Georgia, Chile, and more. These agreements aim to reduce barriers to trade and promote cooperation between China and these countries.

In addition to these agreements, China has also established a free trade agreement with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). This agreement, known as the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area, is designed to reduce customs duties by 90% between China and the ASEAN member states. This agreement aims to promote economic integration and cooperation between China and Southeast Asia, creating opportunities for increased trade and investment. The agreement also helps to strengthen the ties between the two regions, promoting peace and stability in the region. The agreement will help to create jobs and growth and promote economic development for all countries involved.


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Unlock the Potential of the Chinese Market with SINO Shipping

Qianhai – The Premier Special Economic Zone in Shenzhen


Qianhai Zone


The Qianhai Free Trade Port Area is a special economic zone located in the city of Shenzhen, in Guangdong province, China. It was established in 2010 as a way to promote economic development and international trade in the region. The zone is 15 square kilometers and is intended to be a testbed for economic and social reforms; as a result, it is subject to different regulations and policies than the rest of China.

The Qianhai Free Trade Port Area offers a variety of incentives to businesses, such as tax breaks, streamlined regulations, and access to global talent. Its goal is to attract foreign investment and become a hub for international trade and investment. The zone also aims to develop a modern service industry and act as a bridge between the mainland and Hong Kong and Macau, which are both special administrative regions of China, promoting economic cooperation and integration.

It is expected to play a significant role in China’s economic development and its integration with the global economy in the future.


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Advantages of Qianhai for Exporters

Qianhai is a special economic zone located in Shenzhen, China, created to promote trade and investment between China and foreign countries. For exporters, the advantages of Qianhai include:

  • Lower customs tariffs for products exported to China
  • Simplified customs procedures for exporters
  • Easy access to Chinese markets due to the geographical proximity of Qianhai to Hong Kong
  • Tax incentives for companies that establish in the zone
  • Investment and partnership opportunities with Chinese companies
  • Access to privileged policies and regulations regarding international trade and investment
  • Reduction of transportation times for products exported to China
  • Platform for accessing ASEAN markets and establishing partnerships with companies from this region.


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Overview of SINO Shipping’s Qianhai Consolidation Center (QHCC) Services for Cross-border Trade

Qianhai Consolidation Center (QHCC) is a logistics and distribution center located within the Qianhai Special Economic Zone in Shenzhen, China. It was established to provide efficient and cost-effective logistics services for companies engaged in cross-border trade. Some of the services offered by QHCC include:

  • Customs clearance: QHCC offers customs clearance services for goods imported and exported through Qianhai. This includes clearance for both domestic and foreign trade, as well as the inspection and quarantine of goods.
  • Warehousing and storage: QHCC provides storage and warehousing services for goods that are imported, exported, or in transit.
  • Transportation and distribution: QHCC offers logistics and distribution services for goods that are imported, exported, or in transit. This includes both domestic and international transportation, as well as the management of intermodal transportation.
  • Value-added services: QHCC provides a range of value-added services for goods that are imported, exported, or in transit. These include product assembly, packaging, labeling, and testing.

QHCC aims to make cross-border trade more efficient, cost-effective and convenient by providing one-stop services for logistics, customs clearance, warehousing and distribution, making it an attractive platform for foreign companies to access the Chinese market.


Opportunities with SINO Shipping and Qianhai

Are you looking for a location that offers a unique combination of business opportunities and economic incentives? Look no further than the Qianhai Free Trade Port Area in Shenzhen, China. As a leading freight forwarder in the special economic zone in Shenzhen, we offer a range of benefits that can help your company thrive in the Chinese market.

The zone is a 15 square kilometer area that has been designated as a special economic zone within Shenzhen, with the goal of becoming a leading center for international trade and investment. It offers a variety of incentives to businesses, such as tax breaks, streamlined regulations, and access to global talent. These incentives are intended to attract foreign investment and help the zone become a leading center for international trade and investment.

Our location provides access to a large and rapidly growing market. Shenzhen is a major economic hub in China, and Qianhai is located within the city, providing your company with access to a large and diverse customer base. Furthermore, our zone offers a range of favorable policies and incentives, such as lower taxes and streamlined regulatory procedures, designed to encourage investment and economic growth. This can help your company save costs while expanding in China.

In addition, Qianhai is designated as a pilot area for the opening up of China’s capital account and the internationalization of the Renminbi. This makes it an attractive location for companies looking to expand their business beyond China.


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In summary, Qianhai offers a cost-effective solution for companies looking to expand into China, as it provides access to a large market while minimizing the costs associated with setting up a business in China. Don’t miss out on the chance to tap into the vast potential of the Chinese market and take your business to the next level. Contact us today to learn more about the opportunities available in the Qianhai Free Trade Port Area.


Geography And Environment of China, A Choice Destination For Freight


pekin fret maritime


With 1.4 billion inhabitants, or one sixth of the world’s population, the People’s Republic of China is the most populous state in the world. It is made up of eight cities with more than 10 million inhabitants (Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, and Chongqing), as well as more than 30 cities with more than 2 million inhabitants. The Middle Kingdom is also the third largest country in the world after Russia and Canada, with a surface area of 9.68 million km².

In the heart of Asia, it has 14 neighboring states, just like Russia, making it the state with the most neighboring countries in the world. The states that border the Middle Kingdom are Laos, Vietnam, India, Burma, Bhutan, Pakistan, Nepal, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Russia, and North Korea.

The territory has a multitude of climates and landscapes due to its size. In Inner Mongolia, in the north of the territory, there is the Gobi Desert, where the climate is semi-arid. With its humid subtropical and monsoon climate, the south is particularly hilly, with several hills and mountain ranges. The western part of the country is dominated by the Taklamakan Desert, which is one of the most arid deserts in the world, and by the Tibetan Plateau, the highest plateau in the world. Mount Everest, at 8848 meters, is located here.

It has an interesting geographical feature for maritime and river transport in that several rivers, including the Yangtze or Chang Jiang, the Yellow River in the center-east, and the Amur in the north-east, flow through it from east to west. Some rivers flow southward and cross borders, such as the Mekong and the Brahmaputra.


How Is The Local Economy Doing?


shangai import export 1


In terms of GDP, China is ranked second, behind the United States. According to World Bank statistics, since 2014, it has become the world’s leading country for GDP at purchasing power parity, dethroning the United States. Year after year, the Chinese society has been performing well economically. For example, in 2005, its GDP was equivalent to that of France, whereas today it is about five times higher, at 13,119 billion dollars. The unemployment rate posted by the Chinese authorities is currently 4%.

Natural resources are plentiful in the Middle Kingdom with the presence of coal, oil, natural gas, iron ore, tin, mercury, antimony, molybdenum, tungsten, manganese, aluminium, vanadium, zinc, hydraulic energy, uranium, lead and magnetite. Moreover, it ranks first in the world in the field of hydropower resources.

The most important sectors are manufacturing, agriculture, mining and services. The Chinese manufacturing sector is particularly dynamic and export-oriented. Its development is probably linked to the relocation of manufacturing services by several large groups attracted by cheap labour.

For its part, agriculture contributes to about 9% of GDP and employs more than a third of the working population. Thanks to the policy of modernisation of the agricultural sector, the Middle Kingdom is now the leading producer of rice, tea, cotton, potatoes and cereals.

The mining sector is an important pillar of the Chinese economy. With one of the richest sub-soils in the world, China has many coal reserves, making it its primary source of energy.


Doing Business With The Many Freight Suppliers in China

Coface, which aims to protect any company from possible non-payment, ranks the Chinese company at B level in terms of both business environment and country risk. The risk of non-payment therefore seems quite high.

The Euler Hermes group is a little more moderate with a B rating, which corresponds to a medium risk of non-payment.

In recent years, the European Union and the Middle Kingdom have been working to increase trade at all costs within the framework of a global strategic partnership. Moreover, Europe is China’s largest trading partner, and conversely, it is China’s second largest trading partner, behind the United States.


traffic dans le pays de la chine


Need Our Shipping Services To Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen or Dongguan?

The importance of trade with China is increasing. With more than 30 years of experience as a freight forwarder, our company, SINO Shipping, will be there to satisfy your demands. Would you like to entrust us with express transport to these Chinese megacities? Are you looking for a forwarding company to entrust your move by shipping container to China? Our transport company offers air, sea and rail freight forwarding services at an excellent price/quality ratio. We offer a variety of services ranging from cargo flights and containers to cost-effective sea freight. Your goods are priceless to us, which is why we also provide a tracking service for your shipment until it is delivered.

Trade between suppliers and customers by sea or air requires a Chinese freight forwarder who offers quality services and is familiar with local legislation. Our company’s extensive network covers the provinces of Shandong and Guangdong. SINO Shipping is a member company of a large freight forwarding network. We have offices in every province.

Whether you are a customer or a supplier, whatever the weight of your shipments, there is no minimum or maximum, our team will be able to assist you in the logistics chain by sea or air, to obtain import and export licences.

To find out more about our international moving and shipping services, and to find out about our prices, please contact us for any request for international express cargo transport (by air or groupage/container shipment) from any country to the Asian continent. We remain at your service if you have any questions.


Exporting to China: Legal Information to Know

Required Export Documents In China

1. Commercial invoice

In addition to the usual commercial information, the following must be included on the invoice:

  • HS code and country of origin
  • FOB value, CIF cost and CIF value
  • The valid signature of the exporter

2. Packing list

A packing list describing the precise contents of the packages must accompany the shipment: contents, dimensions, weight, number of cartons.

3. Declaration of origin

Approved exporters (AEs) may submit an invoice declaration of origin instead. In addition, invoices must be uploaded to the Electronic Data Interchange with China (EACN) platform.

Experience shows that Chinese importers often require a certificate of origin. In most cases, this means confirming preferential origin by means of the movement certificate and not the “classic” certificate of origin. It is advisable to check with the importer what exactly is involved.



In addition to the mandatory product registrations required in many countries (e.g. for cosmetics, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, etc.), certain product groups in China may also be subject to China Compulsory Certification (CCC), which ensures that the products comply with the standards of the People’s Republic of China. Certification can be a lengthy and expensive process. It is therefore recommended that the costs are covered in the purchase contract.


Sanctions, embargoes and export controls

At the time of writing, there are no sanctions or embargoes against the People’s Republic of China. But the situation can change quickly. We therefore advise you to check before each export that no measures have been taken against China.

Please note that some products and product groups – such as dual-use civilian and military goods – require a permit to be exported, including to countries that are not under sanctions.


Other SINO Shipping’s advices related to China

Business relationships

To be successful, business relationships in China must be built on a solid foundation and require regular follow-up with your partners. Thus, requests for business information arriving from China out of the blue should be treated with great caution. It is not uncommon for such requests to conceal fraudulent offers.



The majority of goods are shipped to China by sea. Scheduled air services allow for shorter delivery times, and rail is now well developed. When negotiating a contract, bear in mind that some Incoterms apply only to sea transport. The Incoterms rules must therefore be chosen according to the means of transport chosen, even if, for example, your customer in China wants to apply the CIF (cost, insurance and freight) rule for delivery by air freight.


Terms of payment

We recommend that companies dealing with China request advance payment or use a letter of credit.


How To Adapt Your Products To The Chinese Market

Your products may be very successful in Europe. But Europe is not China. You need to make some changes to appeal to your new target audience if you want to export. Chinese people do not have the same tastes, nor the same expectations. So let’s list what you have to do.


Branding your product

China is a brand market. Chinese customers are very attached to the image of a product, brand or company. The positioning of your product is also important, as only wealthy consumers will be able to afford an imported product.


Communication in China

You need to attract attention in China and make your product known. To do this, use the Chinese press, which will allow you to increase the notoriety of your company in China.


Marketing tools

Even in BtoB, marketing tools are of paramount importance if you sell products or services with high added value.



If you want to succeed, you need to be present on the Internet. But make no mistake, a Chinese website alone will not be enough to make you known. You need to communicate online, work on your SEO in Chinese on the main search engine Baidu, and exploit the social networks Weibo / Wechat)


The executive

The main difficlty for French companies in China is the executive. There is often a difference between the orders given and the result. This is mainly due to the language barrier, culture and habits.



You must train and motivate your teams, opinion ambassadors. They will be your partners, so it is in your interest to give them all the support they need.


Frequently Asked Questions

What products can be imported into China?

In principle, foreign products can be freely imported into China.

However, the import and sale of some products are prohibited or restricted for various reasons: state security, public order, public health, public morality, environmental protection, etc. The list of these products is published and reviewed by the Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM).


Are there any barriers to imports of foreign products?

In order to control imports, the Chinese authorities have put in place restrictive measures for many products:

  • Requirement to obtain an import licence* ;
  • Application of tariff measures. These measures set tariffs that increase progressively as certain import thresholds are crossed**; and
  • Application of non-tariff measures. These are sanitary, phytosanitary and technical regulations of all kinds that constitute obstacles to the import of foreign products***.

Note : () The import licensing regime varies according to the product. Thus, some licences are valid for a given duration and a given number of import operations while others, more restrictive, must be renewed for each new import of products. () The tariff measures mainly concern agri-food products. (****) When China joined the World Trade Organisation, it made commitments to remove non-tariff barriers to imports. Due to their number and diversity, however, their removal will take a long time.


How does the import licensing system work?

MOFCOM draws up an annual nomenclature of products requiring import licences. The issuance of import licences is then the responsibility of the Quotas and Licensing Office as follows:

  • For a large majority of products, the import licence is for statistical purposes and is issued automatically; and
  • For some products, the issuance of the import licence is subject to authorisation by the Quota and Licensing Board.


Is it necessary to use an import/export company?

Since 1 July 2004, any Chinese legal or natural person can import foreign products provided that they are registered with MOFCOM.

However, certain goods, listed by MOFCOM, can only be imported through import/export companies specially authorised by MOFCOM.


Can a Chinese company freely sign an international sales contract with a foreign company?

Chinese companies have a general capacity to act within their corporate purpose. Within this limit, and subject to restrictions prohibiting certain trades, a Chinese company may validly and freely enter into an international sales contract with a foreign company.


Is the international sales contract between a Chinese company and a foreign company subject to approval or registration?

In principle, the international sales contract concluded between a Chinese company and a foreign company is binding between the parties from the moment it is signed.

However, due to their specific purpose, technology import contracts are subject to approval or registration by the Chinese government*.

Note : (*) See “Importing technology into China” sheet.


To which law should the international sales contract with a Chinese company be governed?

The international sales contract between a Chinese company and a foreign company is subject to the law freely chosen by the parties. The application of a law other than Chinese law may therefore be retained.

In the absence of an express choice by the parties, the applicable law is the one most closely connected with the contract. In addition, unless the parties agree otherwise, the Vienna Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods applies to sales of goods concluded between a Chinese company and a French company*.

Note : (*) The scope of application of this convention is limited to aspects relating to the formation of the international sales contract and the resulting rights and obligations of the parties. The Convention does not govern the following points: (i) the validity of the contract (defects of consent, fraud, etc.), (ii) the transfer of ownership of the goods sold and (iii) the seller’s liability for personal injury caused by the goods sold. For any question concerning any of these issues, the national law applicable to the sales contract should be sought.


Which court has jurisdiction over the international sales contract with a Chinese company?

It is up to the parties to give jurisdiction to the courts of their choice. In particular, any dispute relating to an international sales contract concluded between a Chinese company and a foreign company may be submitted to arbitration, in China or outside China, according to the will of the parties. The arbitration award shall be subject to an application for enforcement to the Courts of the People’s Republic of China.

In the absence of an express choice by the parties, the Chinese courts shall assume jurisdiction if the international sales contract has an effective connection with China, in particular according to the following criteria

  • Signature or performance of the contract in China; or
  • the subject matter of the dispute is in China.


How can a Chinese company obtain the currency needed to pay the price?

Due to China’s exchange control system, Chinese companies cannot freely dispose of foreign currency. In order to settle a payment in foreign currency, Chinese companies can

  • Generally, purchase the foreign currency from a Chinese bank authorised to handle foreign currency transactions. A set of supporting documents must then be provided to the bank (sales contract, invoice, etc); or
  • More rarely, draw on their own foreign exchange reserves if they have been authorised to open a foreign exchange account. This authorisation is issued by the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) to Chinese companies that can prove a certain volume of activity with foreign countries.


What is the control exercised by the Chinese State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE)?

SAFE supervises foreign currency transactions in the following ways:

  • Indirect control: SAFE delegates to authorised banks the task of carrying out routine foreign currency transactions, such as the payment of the price in the context of an international sale. In carrying out this task, the banks are required to comply with exchange control regulations and are subject to a posteriori control by SAFE. In this regard, banks must inform SAFE of foreign exchange transactions that appear suspicious. Certain transactions must be registered by the banks with SAFE; and
  • Direct control: SAFE exercises direct control over foreign exchange transactions outside the scope of the delegation to banks, particularly in the case of large foreign exchange transactions.


How is the customs clearance carried out in China?

The entry of foreign products into China is subject to the payment of customs duties.

Customs duties are in principle based on the contractual value of the goods. Customs clearance formalities can be carried out either by the importer or by a customs agent*. In particular, the import declaration and all documents justifying the legal entry of the products (import licence, quotas, etc.) and their value (invoice) must be submitted to customs.

Note : (*) The use of a customs agent is the usual practice, particularly insofar as the responsibility for the customs clearance formalities rests with the person carrying them out.


Is the import of products subject to VAT?

Imported products are subject to VAT. The general rate applicable is 17%


About SINO

SINO Shipping is a trusted international freight forwarder with over 35 years of experience, offering a full range of logistics and transport services. With a strong presence in China and a commitment to efficiency, reliability, and customer satisfaction, SINO Shipping ensures stress-free and cost-effective logistics solutions for businesses worldwide.