Shipping from China to Latvia Step-by-step Process
The process of shipping cargo from China to Latvia begins from the supplier, and it will end with the customer.
It also involves many people who participate in the loading, offloading, packing and moving the cargo among other things.
Apart from the people involved, you have to look at the machines that make the process a success.
Continue reading and learn more about the process of transporting cargo from China to Latvia.
Please note that there are many ways of carrying the cargo from China to Latvia.
We might not be able to explain all the processes, but you will get the idea about the whole process.
Step 1: Deliver Cargo to Freight Forwarder
Delivering cargo from the supplier is the first step of the process of shipping goods from China to Latvia.
Loading shipping container
You can use a truck to carry the goods from the supplier all the way to the port.
The mode of transport can either be the responsibility of:
- Supplier as an after sales service
- Freight forwarder with full mandate of transporting and delivering goods
- The private entity that you will organize as the buyer or customer
- Shipping company or shipping agent
The process begins with packaging the products appropriately and preparing it for transport.
It is then put on to the truck that will take it all the way to the port or the freight forwarder.
You should note that the relevant documentation should be available as the goods move from one point to the next.
Step 2: Customs Clearance Process in China
Once the goods are with the freight forwarder, he will organize on how it gets on the ship.
Before that, he has to clear with the law, especially the customs department of China.
You can either choose the freight forwarder, shipping company, customs broker to deal with the process of clearing with customs.
This will involve presenting the necessary paperwork such as commercial invoice, CIF and packing list.
All the documents must state clearly the name of the country such as “People’s Republic of China.”
You can quickly go through the process of clearing with customs in any of the customs offices all over China.
Apart from that, there are specific declarations you have to comply with such as:
- The country where goods originate from
- Description and value of the products or cargo
- The composition of the load
- Declare if the goods are semi-complete or complete
- Recipient of the goods
- Name and contacts of the supplier
- The final destination of the merchandise
- HS codes
§ Prohibited and Restricted Exports from China to Latvia
As an importer, you should know the type of goods that will not go through customs.
This is because the goods are not on the list of products Latvia will allow into their country.
China might also have issues with other goods and may not permit them out of their country.
The list of restricted and prohibited goods from China to Latvia include:
- Dangerous goods that will cause harm in Latvia
- Drugs and other narcotics that have international red flags and do not have prescriptions.
- Money orders
- Military Equipment
- Pornographic materials
- Ozone-depleting substance
- Veterinary controls on certain animals
- Specific categories of food and beverages
- Goods that are subject to CITES such as cultural goods
- Certain chemicals
The list of goods that Latvia prohibit is extensive, and you might not be able to get them through customs.
The list of products is not only controlled by Latvia but by the https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_Union European Union at large making them very sensitive.
The prohibitions will also affect courier service providers who will not allow the products on board.
§ Export Inspection and Validation in China
The process of inspecting and validating the cargo is very important in China.
You will have to allow the customs department to inspect and validate the cargo you intend to transport.
Your goods will go through the process of inspection in line with the rules and regulations on exports.
Chinese export inspection
Inspection and validation are important because they help in identifying the restricted and prohibited goods.
Apart from that, it is a measure of security that prevents people from exporting dangerous goods that might cause harm.
All this is going on at the customs point after which you will get a certificate allowing you to proceed with the export.
You will also pay specific tariffs depending on the nature of your goods after the process of inspection.
§ The Export Document Validation Process
After the goods have gone through the inspection and validation process, the documents you have will be validated.
This can be done simultaneously with the process of inspecting and validating the goods.
The documents will get the necessary stamps after validation to allow you to proceed.
Commercial invoice – Photo courtesy: Ship Wire
The documents that you will present for validation will depend on the type of goods and include:
- Commercial invoice
- Bill of lading
- Sales contract
- Packing list
- Proforma invoice
- Insurance policy
- Customs declaration
After the validation of the documents is complete, you will pay the necessary tariffs and taxes.
§ Export Duties and Taxes in China
China imposes an export duty and tax on a few goods such as semi-manufactured goods and resource products.
It levies temporary tariffs on certain exports such as crude oil, iron alloy, and chemical fertilizers to conserve their resources.
The tax charged on export and import duties are the same in China.
Export duties and taxes in China – Photo courtesy: China Briefing
Generally, export duties and taxes on certain goods are free if you are exporting them to Latvia and other countries.
The only charge you will pay for is the 17 percent Value Added Tax (VAT) which you might regard as the tax you pay.
This move encourages exporters to increase their exports and improve the economy of China.
Step 3: The Process of Shipping from China to Latvia
Shipping goods from China to Latvia is a long but straightforward process.
Your goods have to go through customs for necessary clearance before transporting them.
After that, you will load the good on either a ship or a plane for shipment all the way to Latvia.
§ Sea Freight Shipping Service from China to Latvia
Sea freight shipping is the process by which you will transport cargo from the seaport on a ship.
There are many types of cargo ships you will use depending on the type of load you intend to transport to Latvia.
Many shipping companies will assist in transporting your cargo effectively and efficiently.
Most of the shipping companies have links to the warehouse they own in Latvia.
This means that your cargo will be safe in the warehouses for a specific period until you organize for transport.
These companies will also deliver the goods to the warehouse of choice depending on the arrangements you have with them.
Port of Ventspils
As an importer, you have options you can choose from depending on the type of cargo before loading your goods.
Your goods can either be on full container loads (FCL) or less than a container load (LCL).
The costs vary, and you will have the chance of deciding the best mode of transport for your products.
The rates of shipping goods from China to Latvia will depend on:
- The type of cargo and weight of cargo you are transporting
- The shipping mode you chose for your cargo
- The route that the ship will take as it transports your goods
The guidance of freight forwarders will take your cargo to different cities in Latvia such as:
Manufacturers in China are spoilt of choice as they can make the goods to for export.
Ports in China – Photo courtesy: PHOENIXRYZING
The goods will come from different seaports in China including:
- Port of Shanghai
- Port of Hong Kong
- Port of Shenzhen
- Port of Qingdao
- Port of Kaohsiung
- Port of Guangzhou
- Port of Tianjin
- Port of Xiamen
- Port of Dalian
The kind of services you will receive on sea freights include:
- LCL Shipments
- FCL Shipments
- Arrangement and analysis of optimum transportation route
- Control on cargo movements and provision of information on the time at all the stages.
- Processing and drafting of all the customs documents
The types of cargo ships available for sea freight include:
- Standard containers
- Heavy and bulky freight
- Bulky liquid cargo
- Dangerous cargo
- Cargo that requires specific temperature conditions
§ Air Freight Shipping Service from China to Latvia
Air freight shipping is the process by which you will move your cargo from China to Latvia on a plane.
It is the fastest and most efficient mode of transporting goods from China to Latvia.
Most of the goods that you will transport in planes are perishable and requires to get to the customers on time.
It is the most efficient way of transporting cargo especially when it comes to the door to door delivery services.
There are warehouses around the major airports that deal with carrying cargo where you can store your goods.
The goods you transport will arrive at your destination airport waiting for you to pick them up as soon as possible.
Airports in Latvia
The kind of cargo that you will transport via air freights is usually not as bulky as the one on sea freights.
They might be perishable goods that need to reach the consumer as fast as possible before they get worse.
Most of the lightweight and electronic devices such as watches and phones come in through the air freight.
Most of the courier services specialize in faster movement of cargo using the air freights.
It is the reason why they can promise to deliver your goods on time without major delays unless otherwise.
Despite the speed of delivery, you will have to dig deeper into your pockets in comparison to sea freights.
International air freights are not the same as Express flights in relation to speed and the type of goods they carry.
Express flights carry lighter goods and they do direct flights all the way to the destination.
Express flights are specialties of courier companies such as DHL, FedEx, and UPS which do door to door deliveries on request.
International air freights may carry larger cargo as they pass through different airports before they get to you.
The size of the cargo they carry is generally big and in fact is the fastest way you can get your vehicle to the point you need it.
The transit time is slower in comparison to the express flights that deliver goods under five days depending on the route.
§ What is the Cost of Air Freights?
Transporting goods using air freights depend on the size and the weight of the cargo.
Air freight carriers will look at the actual weight or volumetric weight of your cargo before charging you.
Usually, they will look at the weight that will be more expensive if they decide to use.
The cost of air freights is usually very expensive in comparison to other forms of transporting cargo.
The cost of transporting cargo from one place to another is the major factors that discourage people.
It is very expensive therefore people have to look at various factors such as the value of the goods you are transporting.
When you are considering the transport of cargo through the air, you have to look at the cargo you transport.
The kind of cargo that you will need to transport through air freights include:
- Documents, which will go by courier companies such as DHL, UPS,
- Fashion garments
- Production samples
- Seafood products
- Perishable goods such as agricultural products like flowers
- Inputs that require to meet a particular deadline
- Emergency shipments of spare parts
§ The Process of Transporting Cargo through Air Freights
The method of transporting cargo from China to Latvia starts from the manufacturer to the consumer.
The manufacturer will package the commodity well and give it out to the relevant transport who will take it to the airport.
You will organize for transportation or use the transport that the manufacturer may offer as an after-sales service.
The second step is clearing the goods with the customs authority in China who are in various offices around the country.
You will do this using the customs brokers or the shipping companies that are available in China.
They have more experience at dealing with the customs, and they are readily available to help you at a fee.
They will present the relevant documents to the customs offices allowing them to inspect the goods you have.
The customs office will go through your goods and documents and make sure that they are falling under the regulations.
After that, you might be asked to pay your customs charges, taxes and tariffs before the cargo leaves the country.
You will receive a certification document that will allow you to pass through the gates of the airport.
Transport your goods to the airport and load them onto the airplane that will transport them to Latvia.
The type of air transport for your cargo will depend on the amount of money you pay.
Riga International Airport
Finally, you will have your cargo on the plane ready for taking off all the way to the airport you choose.
Once the goods arrive at the airport in Latvia, you are at liberty of picking it up and taking it to your destination.
Remember to clear the goods with customs authority in Latvia before you take them anywhere as it might cause problems.
§ What’s the Estimated Transit Time from China to Latvia?
The transit time from China to Latvia will depend on the port where it comes from and the destination port.
You should also expect delays as the mode of transport might experience problems that delay their progress.
The transit time is in days and be sure to give an allowance as it might arrive earlier or late.
|From sea port in China||To sea port in Latvia||Estimate time
China has many seaports from which they can transport the goods.
Latvia, on the other hand, is a small country and uses Riga as the main port among others.
You will carry your cargo from the port that you desire depending on the location of your supplier.
Step 4: Customs Clearance Process in Latvia
The goods that you import from China to Latvia has to pass through the customs authority in Latvia.
This is a fundamental process, and you need to look at it with a sober mind.
Customs will inspect the goods you import to see if they fall within the categories they allow.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs Latvia
Latvia is one of the countries in Europe that fall under the rules and regulations of the European Union.
It applies the “European Union Trade Policy” which include measures against anti-subsidy and anti dumping.
The import regime of the European Union works in Latvia especially the imports that revolve around the textile industry.
§ Prohibited and Restricted Imports in Latvia
The list of imports that are restricted and prohibited in Latvia is in three main categories:
List of Toxic Chemicals of the Convention on the Prohibition of Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on Their Destruction (CWC).
- List of Arms, Weapons, and Munitions.
- List of Dual-use Goods.
- Some of the goods include acids, Antiques, animal skin, bio-products, corrosives, flammables, infectious substances, oxidizers, poisons and work of art. Apart from that, other goods include radio actives, precious stones, seeds, tobacco, toiletries paints, perfumes, graphite, gases and gas samples. The list also has computer software, Diplomatic mail, furs, foodstuffs, Ice blue, ice wet, ice dry and liquor, Haz.
Latvia does not allow timber and logs from Liberia used as poles, wood-chips, fence pickets, flooring timber, and sheets.
§ Import documents validation and verification
Importing goods into Latvia from China will require you to have particular documents before you bring them into the country.
You will present the papers to the customs department in Latvia before you deliver your goods for business.
Other documents will be given to you after the validation and verification of the goods and materials you present.
You will have to present the documents online for validation and verification as the goods arrive.
Submitting the documents early enough will give you an allowance to collect your products as soon as clearance is complete.
Validation and verification are the responsibility of the customs department in Latvia who have offices all over the country.
After the customs office has gone through your documents, they will verify and validate their authenticity.
They will look at the details on the documents and confirm that they are right as per the regulations.
They will ask you to pay the customs fee, taxes, and tariffs on the goods you are importing before clearing you.
Finally, a certificate will be given to you to allow you to bring the cargo into the country.
You can request the assistance of the customs brokers of the shipping company to take care of everything.
They have more experience in dealing with the customs department making it a straightforward process.
§ Verification of consumer product safety
According to the rules and regulations that govern the import of goods in Latvia.
There are a number of goods that are under prohibition and restriction.
These goods will not pass the process of inspection in Latvia and may attract penalties to the importer.
The Consumer Rights Protection Center (CRPC) in Latvia is responsible for protecting the consumer against shady traders.
It provides the relevant information to the consumer on the rights that they have against certain types of products.
It is the body that will also help the consumer in case a conflict arises between the consumer and the trader.
Imports are some of the goods that the consumers will use once they are allowed into the country.
The goods have to go through the process of verification before they are given a chance to be in the market.
The goods have to meet particular standards of quality so as to protect the consumer from using old products.
Apart from that, the goods will go through certain checks to confirm that they are safe for use by the consumers.
Your cargo will be subject to inspection specifically to verify if the goods are not prohibited or restricted.
Apart from that, the legislation are enhanced by the legislation of the European Union making them better for consumer protection.
§ How to calculate import duties and taxes
The process of valuation of the import taxes and duties is based on CIF.
They will look at the total sum of the goods you import plus the cost of insurance and shipping.
With this in hand, the calculation can be done quickly as per the sales and duty tax for Latvia.
||Average Duty Rates
||Sales tax (GST)
||Threshold on goods
|0% to 48.5%
||ST = 21%
VAT = ST (CIF + Duty)
|No duty – if FOB<EUR 150
No VAT – If FOB<EUR 22
§ Import clearance process
Goods that come into the country have to go through specific clearance processes before they get into the state.
Depending on the mode of transport, the clearance process may vary, but they mean the same thing.
Clearing of goods at the port is the responsibility of the customs department, and it begins with you submitting documents.
You will submit the documents electronically for the customs department to handle early enough.
The documents will come through as soon as you realize the goods are almost reaching the port.
As soon as the goods arrive at the port, you will have the cargo taken to a warehouse.
Before you do that, the cargo will go through inspection before you get them with you.
After inspection and certification of the goods, you will take them from the port.
This comes after the tariffs and taxes are paid and you have the clearance to proceed.
Step 5: Freight Forwarder Deliver Cargo to Buyer
Now, this is yet another critical step when importing from China to Latvia.
§ Popular Incoterms when Shipping from China to Latvia
Incoterms are the international commercial terms also known as:
- Freight terms
- Shipping terms
- Trade terms
These are the standard terminologies that you will come across when making international trade varying depending on the shipment.
Since there are a lot of transactions when importing goods, you have to specify on the incoterms you will use.
You have to know who will be responsible for paying the bills depending on the type of shipment you use.
The most common Incoterms 2010you will come across include:
The governments, practitioners and legal authorities, all over the world accept the rules and the regulations of the Incoterms.
The rules help in the elimination of different interpretations that may be confusing in different countries all over the world.