China Customs adopts GTIN reporting function in single window declaration system


For immediate release 1 August 2019 - Imports and exports to China will be streamlined using Global Trade Item Numbers (GTIN) thanks to a resolution by Chinese Customs. The General Administration of Customs of China (GAC) rolled out a GTIN reporting function for its single window declaration system on 1 August, 2019, marking a significant step toward adopting GS1 barcodes in customs clearance. The decision comes in response to recent rapid growth in cross-border trade, both in type and volume.

Improving the efficiency of supervision and customs clearance has become a significant challenge for customs agencies around the world. There is great interest in the role GTIN can play to meet these growing needs.

Global Trade Item Numbers are the numbers used to create barcodes within the GS1 system, the system used on consumer products globally. The system is administered by GS1, a group of member organisations operating in 114 individual countries.

Customs agencies all over China have implemented GTIN declaration for the single window system and enterprises can enjoy an intelligent auto-fill feature by using GTIN. This simplifies and speeds up the declaration process and improves accuracy.

“Declaration by GTIN” provides a convenient and fast method for enterprises to complete the declaration form "within a second" through intelligent autofill, instead of the normal manual entry previously required by China Customs.

Based on the recently established GTIN information database which covers multi-dimensional commodity information, including ingredients, brand, specification, country of origin, uses and other critical business information, an imported or exported product can be automatically identified and its declaration elements such as classification, country of origin and specification can automatically appear in the “single window” system as long as its GTIN is provided and related product information has been populated in the database.

“This is great news for all GS1 Australia members trading with China,” said Marcel Sieira, Head of Customer Engagement and Business Development. “GS1 standards and data can be leveraged for faster clearance and shorter cycles. GS1 Australia continues to work with Australian agencies in adopting similar approaches locally”.

According to a customs specialist at Taicang TuoHai Customs Clearance Co Ltd, an experienced customs broker of infant formula milk powder, it is very difficult for them to complete the declaration form due to the complexity and terminology of ingredients which amount to six or seven on average, and sometimes more than ten in a single product. From now on, once a GTIN has been entered and confirmed, all its ingredient information will enter the system immediately. In addition, the system has a batch import function for product series, which greatly improves efficiency.

About GS1 Australia

GS1 Australia is the Australian member of GS1, a not-for-profit global organisation that develops and maintains the most widely used supply chain standards in the world and a leader in facilitating efficient international business. GS1 Australia currently serves 22 industry sectors and supports more than 20,000 members nationally to improve supply chain efficiency and cost effectiveness by adopting best practice GS1 global standards. For more information visit or follow the company on LinkedIn and Twitter

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GS1 Australia Media Contact
Caterina Slade
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T: (03) 9550 3415 or 1300 227 263