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International Trade Corner: December 2021

Harmonized System Tariff Classification Webinar – Coming soon on January 11th! 

A couple of months ago, I wrote an article about Harmonized System (HS) codes, a type of industry classification codes that are used to identify goods that are being exported and imported across international borders. Among other uses, the HS serves as the basis for determining Customs duty rates and for compiling trade statistics. 

 On January 11, 2022, I will be offering the first of various webinars with a focus on international trade. The HS system will be the topic of this webinar and the timing is fortuitous. The HS system which is used around the world (in most countries including the United States) is overseen by the World Customs Organization (WCO). The Harmonized System undergoes a major change every five years with the next one set to take place on January 1, 2022. This time, there are a total of 351 amendments to the system that will become effective in January. 

There are different reasons for HS code changes, but often they reflect trade policy concerns, evolving technology, and consumer preferences that are reflected in imports and exports. For example, as I mentioned in a recent LinkedIn post, telephone answering machines and globes like the ones we used to have at home and in classrooms are set to lose their own HS codes in 2022. At the same time, e-waste, novel tobacco and nicotine products, and Unmanned Aerial vehicles (UAVs or drones), will be more precisely defined by HS codes in order to gather more accurate trade data and control their movement across borders. 

The upcoming webinar on HS codes scheduled for January 11th is open to all and we hope you will be able to join us for this non-technical session. If you have any questions on the webinar and/or are an entrepreneur / Small business in Mississippi and would like to request international trade assistance, please feel free to reach out to Mississippi-SBDC Manager of International Trade Anthony Cambas by email or by phone (662) 832-3771.