The Nomenclature governed by the Convention on the Harmonised Commodity Description and Coding System, commonly known as the “HS Nomenclature”, is a multi-purpose international nomenclature which was drawn up under the auspices of the World Customs Organisation (WCO).
There are currently 155 Contracting Parties to this Convention, however, it is applied by over 200 administrations worldwide, mostly to establish their national customs tariffs and for the collection of economic statistical data.
The European Union and its Member States together represent a bloc of 29 Contracting Parties to this Convention.
The HS nomenclature comprises some 5,000 groups of goods which are identified by a 6-digit code and organised according to a legal and logical structure based on fixed rules.
The European Union (EU) Combined Nomenclature incorporates the HS nomenclature and comprises additional 8-digit subdivisions and legal notes specifically created to meet the Community’s needs.
The official interpretation of the HS, which provides for its uniform interpretation worldwide, is provided by the HS Committee, which includes representatives of the Contracting Parties to the HS Convention. Other administrations, international organisations, international trade and industry are represented as observers.
The HS Convention provides for two types of decisions taken by the HS Committee:
Decisions amending the Convention, including its nomenclature (procedure under Article 16) and Decisions “managing or interpreting” the Convention and which normally take the form of classification decisions, explanatory notes or classification opinions (procedure under Article 8).
For the latest amendments to the HS Explanatory Notes and Classification Opinions, see the WCO website.
In both cases, the EU and its member states together have only one vote. Contracting Parties may enter a “reservation” against both types of decisions. A “reservation” against an amendment of the Convention (Article 16 procedure) annuls the decision that has been taken.
On the other hand, the legal effect of a “reservation” under an Article 8 procedure of the Convention is limited to a suspension of the decision which has to be re-examined at a subsequent Committee meeting. In practice, this simply means that the final decision is postponed for 6 to 12 months.
Generally, amendments to the HS Convention become binding on all Contracting Parties two years after they have been notified by the Secretary-General of the WCO. However, decisions concerning the management and interpretation of the Convention are generally deemed to have been accepted by all Contracting Parties two months after the decision of the HS Committee.
To obtain the HS code corresponding to the objects you are going to ship you can consult the following link.