Country profile Customs formalities and requirements for imports
The United Mexican States, Mexico’s official name, is among the 16 largest economies in the world, according to data from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to 2017, and it is the fourth largest economy in the Americas, behind the U.S., Canada and Brazil.
In 2017 Mexico’s GDP grew above 2.0% and it is expected to grow by 1.9% and 2.3% in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Likewise, GDP per capita for 2017 stood at USD 9,249 (estimated data). In the same year Mexico had an unemployment rate of 3.4%, according to a report published by the Bank of Mexico.
In 2016, Mexico was the 12th largest importer of goods worldwide, according to the World Trade Organization (WTO), with the main countries of origin for these imports being: the USA with 47.3%, China with 17.7% and the European Union (EU) with 11.1%. In the case of Spain, Mexico was in that year the leading destination for Spanish exports to Latin America and Spain is the third largest source of imports to Mexico from the EU.
By 2017, imports had grown by 6.52% over the previous year with a total of 420.369 billion dollars. Purchases from abroad represented 37.48% of its GDP.
The main products imported into this country include machinery, parts and spare parts, oil refining equipment, electrical and electronic equipment (computers, mobile phones, integrated circuits, storage devices, input and output units, signal receivers, various electronic components, etc.), automotive products, etc.
In 2015, electrical and electronic equipment were the main type of manufactured products imported, representing 23.9%, followed by industrial machinery and equipment with 17.1% and automotive products with 14.5%, according to data from the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI).
There are other goods that, while they are not high on the list of imports into Mexico, have shown a significant increase in recent years, these include: clothing, furniture and mattresses, molded plastic articles, etc.
E-commerce in Mexico reaches 17 billion dollars
E-commerce grew by 28.3% in the period from 2016 to 2017, with a turnover of over 17 billion dollars, with a significantly higher figure forecast for 2018.
Customs, the key to importing goods
It is important to have exact knowledge of import requirements, depending on the type of goods, in order to avoid delays in the release of your shipment, or worse still, it could be that the customs authorities do not authorize receipt of the shipment and it has to be returned to its origin for not meeting the requirements for importation. Likewise, knowing whether the goods are subject to the payment of taxes, tariffs and duties will avoid surprises.
Documentation Required for Import
In Mexico, a commercial invoice that covers the goods to be imported is essential when their customs value exceeds 300 USD. This invoice must contain the following information:
(a) Place and date of issue.
(b) Name and address of the consignee of the goods.
(c) A detailed commercial description of the goods (class, quantity of units, identification numbers, etc.).
d) Name and address of the seller.
In the case of goods entering through the postal service, Customs Declaration CN22 or CN23 will be used for customs clearance, depending on the type of shipment, which will already include the description and value of the items. These documents are issued by the postal operator at origin with the information provided by the sender and presented for clearance at the destination by the local exchange bureau, together with postal transport documents CN37 or CN38.
Normally, the local exchange bureau carries out the clearance procedures before Customs on behalf of the importer, using an agile and simplified procedure. Find out the advantages of the postal service over other shipping methods in our post Advantages of the Postal Service for the Transport of E-commerce Goods.
The e-book prepared by Cacesa on import requirements in Latin America also details other documents that are required to prove compliance with regulations and non-tariff restrictions on imports and certain guarantees. This same text lists the goods that are subject to special control and that require registration in the Importers in Specific Sectors Register in order to prevent practices that affect the productive sectors in the country as well as Public Health and National Security.
Prohibited and restricted articles, taxes and import duties
Finally, Mexican import legislation requires certain duties be paid to the State depending on the goods to be transported. Specific restrictions and regulations must also be taken into account when importing health and food products and other restricted goods. Download the Cacesa ebook to see the complete list of articles that are prohibited and restricted for import into Latin American countries, including Mexico.
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