Tariff Public Advice Products

The existing Tariff Precedent system is being changed. The new system, the Public Advice Products System, retains Tariff Precedents, but also introduces a new product, Tariff Classification Guides. The Practice Statement which outlines the policy for this new service is currently in the consultative stage. A copy of the exposure draft of the Practice Statement is provided below for your information.

What are Public Advice products?

Tariff's Public Advice Products are Tariff Precedents and Tariff Classification Guides (NEW). These are statements from us, made to provide general advice about classification and classification issues.

A Tariff Precedent is specific to a tariff classification and provides advice on types of goods or classification issues relating to that classification. Tariff Classification Guides are documents that provide advice on more complex issues or on issues that span many classifications.

A Public Advice Product is not a Tariff Advice issued under the Advance Rulings framework. Tariff Advices give administratively binding advice on specific goods for a specific importer based on documentary and retained information provided by the applicant. A Public Advice Product does not give binding advice on a specific good, but provides a statement of the current thinking by us on a type of good, a class of goods or a classification issue.

In addition, a list of commonly imported goods to assist private (non-commercial) one-off importers is also available.

Current public advice products

Tariff precedents

See List of Current Precedents (2.16MB PDF) for all current precedents.

New precedent 21820600 for the classification of chemically impregnated dog collars restates our opinion, previously outlined in some of the below precedents, that such goods should be classified under heading 3808.

The following precedents have been revoked due to legislative amendments to the Customs Tariff Act 1995, resulting from changes to the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (HS), which came into effect on 1 January 2017. These precedents have not been replaced, except in one instance, because the changes have clarified the classification of the goods or clarification is no longer needed. Revoked precedents cannot be used as exemplars after either the date of relevant legislative change or the date of revocation (whichever occurs earliest). If there is doubt as to the classification of any goods previously covered by a precedent, the option of seeking an advance ruling is open.

Precedents revoked and related heading:

  • Heading 0302 (fish): 21064500, 21064700, 21064900, 21065000
  • Heading 1211 (plant material): 19571300, 21103900, 19571200, 19571400, 19571100
  • Heading 2933 (trimethylol melamine): 19573400
  • Heading 3002 (HIV diagnostic kit): 20351500
  • Heading 3808 (insecticides etc.): 19574400, 19574500, 19574600, 19574700, 19574800, 19574900, 19575000, 19575100, 19575500, 19575600, 20399400.

Email any comments or requests to replace revoked precedents to tariff@border.gov.au. Further updates will follow and any precedents requiring substantial changes will be published as drafts. The last update of this file was 13 April 2017.

The following acronyms could be found in the precedents:

  • HSEN (Harmonised System Explanatory Notes)
  • WCO (World Customs Organisation)
  • COCO (Compendium of Classification Opinions of the WCO)
  • AAT (Administration Appeals Tribunal)
  • ACBPS (Australian Customs and Border Protection Service).

Tariff classification guides

The guides below provide advice on more complex issues or on issues that span many classifications.

Commonly imported goods for private importers

A list of Commonly Imported Goods (769KB PDF) and their tariff classifications has been created to provide guidance and information to private importers who need to declare non-commercial, one-off importations. The Customs Tariff Act 1995 (the Act) is the legal authority for classification and this list does not in any way replace or supersede the Act. Only the latest official version of the Act is authoritative. For this reason, any one-off, private importer who is not sure if their goods are properly described in the list should look at the Act under the Working Tariff (Current) tab or ask advice.

All commercial importations must be done in full accordance with the Act and this list should not be relied on for commercial imports.

Exposure drafts

Prior to the final publication of Tariff Precedents and Tariff Classification Guides, an exposure draft is​ available to allow for consultation and feedback on the clarity of the document.

Policy drafts closed for consultation

The following drafts are now closed for comments:


Send your comments, suggestions and feedback on the precedent system at tariff@border.gov.au.