What is a Carnet?
Carnets are "Merchandise Passports." They are international customs documents that simplify customs procedures for the temporary importation of various types of goods. In the U.S., two types are issued: ATA and TECRO/AIT Carnets.
ATA Carnets ease the temporary importation of commercial samples (CS), professional equipment (PE), and goods for exhibitions and fairs (EF). They facilitate international business by avoiding extensive customs procedures, eliminating payment of duties and value-added taxes (minimum 20% in Europe, 27% in China), and replacing the purchase of temporary import bonds.
Benefits of Carnets
Carnets save time, effort, and money. They:
- May be used for unlimited exits from and entries into the U.S. and foreign countries (Carnets are valid for one year)
- Are accepted in over 75 countries and territories
- Eliminate value-added taxes (VAT), duties, and the posting of security normally required at the time of importation
- Simplify customs procedures. Carnets allow a temporary exporter to use a single document for all customs transactions, make arrangements in advance, and at a predetermined cost
- Facilitate reentry into the U.S. by eliminating the need to register the goods with U.S. Customs at the time of departure.