All merchantable goods as well as private goods not carried in personal luggage or private motor vehicle must be declared according to the customs tariff upon import and export.
Like most customs tariffs in the world, Switzerland’s is based on the internationally applicable Harmonized System (HS). The first six of the eight digits of the Swiss tariff items correspond to those of the HS.
The Federal Customs Administration makes the Customs Tariff (Tares) available free of charge on the Internet (www.tares.ch). After selecting the date, the country of origin or destination, the direction of traffic (import/export), the 8-digit tariff heading and a possible conventional number as well as clicking on the symbol with the magnifying glass, the possible duty rates (normal or granted under precise conditions for certain uses or toward presentation of valid certificates of origin), supplementary charges (taxes, fees), permit subjection and other remarks appear. Several links can also be accessed from this application, such as Q. 4 (Decisions on the classification of goods), Q. 6 (Customs Tariff Explanatory Notes, which explain in detail which goods fall under certain tariff headings), and remarks (general, guidance on free trade agreements, customs quotas, trade statistics, customs facilities, taxes, import and export permits as well as special requirements). Under “Help” are an online manual, answers to frequently asked questions, and hotline addresses.
Electronic training as well as the ability to print a list of tariff items as a pdf document complete the Internet offering.