Your Hong Kong cheat sheet which covers customs clearance and import duties for your e-commerce international shipping needs, eCommerce insights, and more
How to Ship
Articles - coming soon!
Related Guides - coming soon!
|Currency||Hong Kong Dollar (HK$)|
|Population Size||7.49 million|
Hong Kong’s eCommerce market revenue amounts to US$4.784 billion in 2019. This revenue is expected to show an annual growth rate of 7.9%, resulting in a market volume of US$6.484 billion by 2023.
This projected increase is largely driven by a digital-savvy consumer population in Hong Kong, with more than half of the population shopping online consistently across different screens, and a continuous increase in the value of e-wallet transactions.
|Goods and Services Tax (GST)||N/A|
|Total tax applicable||0%|
*In general, B2C imports into the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) are tax-free.
Some exceptions to this include:
There is no tax or excise duty on exports from HKSAR. For more information, please visit Hong Kong’s Customs and Excise Department.
Restricted items that must meet certain conditions before going through customs clearance:
Prohibited items that cannot be imported into the country:
This list may change depending on government regulations. Visit the official customs page for the latest version.
For your B2C goods to pass Hong Kong’s customs clearance, you’ll need to provide the following documents:
This gives product details, shipment volume in kilogram or cubic meter, and serves as a checklist to ensure shipment has been packed correctly or not.
This gives total shipment value usually in US dollar. Helps to determine the import duties and taxes, and eligibility of shipment.
If you are shipping B2B or without a logistics partner that can clear customs on your behalf, you may need to include the following shipping documentation as well:
Cards (credit, debit and prepaid) are the most common method of payment, utilised by 50.6% of the Hong Kong population in 2019, followed by E-Wallets, constituting 36.9% of the population.
However, this trend is expected to change within the next 5 years as there is a projected switch in top preference, from cards to e-wallets. By 2023, 58% of the Hong Kong population is projected to mainly be utilising e-wallets, while cards usage is expected to drop to a mere 24%.
Saturday, Sunday and public holidays are non-working days. Please expect shipment delays on these days.
List of public holidays:
|Jan 1||New Year’s Day|
|Feb 5 – 7 (Varies based on Lunar Calendar)||Chinese New Year|
|Apr 5||Qingming Festival|
|Apr 19||Good Friday|
|Apr 20||The day following Good Friday|
|Apr 22||Easter Monday|
|May 1||Labour Day|
|May 13||The day following the Birthday of the Buddha|
|Jun 7||Tuen Ng Festival|
|Jul 1||Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Establishment Day|
|Sep 14||The day following the Chinese Mid-Autumn Festival|
|Oct 1||National Day|
|Oct 7||Chung Yeung Festival|
|Dec 25||Christmas Day|
|Dec 26||The first weekday after Christmas Day|
|Event Name||Event Period|
|Chinese New Year||Usually in Jan or Feb|
|Summer Fun Festival||June – August|
|Single’s Day (11/11)||Nov 11|
|Christmas||Nov – Dec|
Statista (2019) | Nielsen (2018) | KPMG (2015) | Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, London (2019) | Customs and Excise Department, The Government of HKSAR (2017) | GovHK (2019) | Boland “When Are the Hong Kong Shopping Sales” (2018) | DiscoverHongKong (n.d.) | Workman “Hong Kong’s Top Trading Partners” (2019) | GlobalEDGE (n.d.)
Updated as of 26 Jul 2019.
Towards the end of July, Southeast Asian eCommerce platforms witness optimistic growth, Chinese eCommerce giant JD.com increases artificial intelligence use, and the US-China trade war continues with US tariffs on Vietnam and Alibaba’s move to thaw tensions. Find out more!
As April comes to a close, Reliance relies on staff for tests, Alibaba takes students from the Singapore of Africa and double down on Tmall sales, while Thailand challenges Chinese e-commerce giants, and the Lazada-L’Oreal partnership plans to expand on e-commerce fulfilment in Southeast Asia.
The beginning of Q2 2019 marks a few interesting developments with some major e-commerce players in the region. Players in Singapore turn to their own market to ride the e-commerce wave, AirAsia is set to disrupt Malaysia’s air freight industry, and the China-Spain air cargo route sees a land freight challenger.
Getting accurate data on the shipping label is crucial in the cross-border shipping process. Find out how you can ensure data integrity for a smooth eCommerce delivery.
With different import duty and tax rates for every country and every type of item, customs payments may appear daunting. Read on to find out how customs clearance can be made smoother with delivered-duties paid (DDP) so that you can expand into the Southeast Asian market with a peace of mind!
Customs Clearance requires your shipment to gain official permission to enter a country and for the required duties and taxes to be paid. That's the gist of it, but there's more, click here to find out more!