Home » News » Industry News » Guide to Importing and Shipping Machinery and Equipment from China

Guide to Importing and Shipping Machinery and Equipment from China

In 2018, machinery was China’s largest export, worth US$3.18 trillion. Due to the importance of automatic production lines, which allow large production, improve productivity and working conditions, reduce the space required for production, reduce production cost and shorten the production cycle, and due to the terrible diversity and multiplicity of options within the Chinese market, it has become difficult to choose machines that comply with the legal requirements of the importing country and the required safety standards to ensure that they are allowed to enter the country you have chosen.

Because of the multiplicity of factors that you have to take into account, starting with finding the right supplier and devices of the right quality to avoid buying defective products or non-conforming to your requirements, we summarized them for you in this article with 9 factors that must be taken into account when importing machines and devices from China, and we formulated them as questions you should ask the candidate suppliers to choose from.


Types of machinery and equipment

There are many types of mechanical equipment. When the mechanical equipment is running, some of its components can perform different forms of mechanical movements. Mechanical equipment consists of driving devices, transmission devices, transmission devices, working devices, braking devices, protective devices, lubrication systems and cooling systems. There are 12 main categories of mechanical equipment:

  1. Agricultural machinery. Including tractors, planters, harvesters, etc.
  2. Heavy mining machinery. Including metallurgical machinery, mining machinery, hoisting machinery, loading and unloading machinery, industrial and mining vehicles, cement equipment, etc.
  3. Construction machinery. Including forklifts, scraper machinery, compaction machinery, concrete machinery, etc.
  4. Machine tools. Including metal cutting machine tools, forging machinery, casting machinery, woodworking machinery, etc.
  5. Instruments. Including automation instruments, electrical instruments, optical instruments, component analyzers, automotive instruments, electrical equipment, educational equipment, cameras, etc.
  6. Cars. Including trucks, road buses, cars, modified cars, motorcycles, etc.
  7. Petrochemical general machinery. Including oil refining machinery, pumps, blowers, valves, gas compressors, refrigeration and air conditioning machinery, paper making machinery, plastic processing machinery, pharmaceutical machinery, etc.
  8. Electrical machinery. Including power generation machinery, transformers, motors, high and low voltage switches, wires and cables, batteries, welding machines, household appliances, etc.
  9. Basic machinery. Including bearings, hydraulic parts, seals, powder metallurgy products, standard fasteners, industrial chains, gears, molds, etc.
  10. Packaging machinery. Including packaging machines, packaging machines, conveyors, etc.
  11. Environmentally friendly machinery. Including water pollution prevention and control equipment, air pollution prevention and control equipment, solid waste treatment equipment, etc.
  12. The latter category is other machines.

How to import and ship machinery and equipment from China

 1. Will the machine or machine be installed in your factory?

Will the supplier export the machine installed or will you need to install it in your factory or company? It may not seem that important, especially since most suppliers offer installation and installation service, so you feel that there is no difference between the two. However, the reality is different. A Chinese supplier rarely has employees or installation and maintenance partnerships in your country. Thus, their offer is limited to sending an art artist to you.

What does it mean to send a Chinese technician to your country? This means you have to secure a visa for them and pay for their transportation, which can make hiring a local company and technicians a better option for you. The complexity of the visa process for a Chinese temporary worker and the time it will take to obtain a temporary visa (if technicians are available in your country who can handle imported machines) cannot be underestimated.

Most companies that import Chinese-made machines rely on local technicians (in maintenance), or their own skills, rather than expecting the supplier to solve anything.

The arrival of the device to you at full capacity ready to work, a significant feature that may make you prefer one resource over another, so ask about it and make sure.

2. Do you need to train workers on machines? Does the company provide this service?

Providing technical assistance is the most impactful step companies can take to help their teams work on new machines. This should include both initial training and complementary troubleshooting drills that appear in the early stages of implementation. However, these exercises are not without cost, which means that you cannot get results directly while bearing the cost of mistakes.

When interviewing vendors, ask about after-sales support. Ask if you have access to a variety of technical resources and references that anyone can use for ongoing training.

Otherwise, it may even take you to send an employee to learn to use the machines and return to train the rest of the staff, all of which are costs that should not be overlooked.

ALSO KNOW: How to import machinery and production lines from China

How to Ship Imported Excavators and Other Heavy Equipment from China

3. Do the machines and devices imported from China comply with all standard certificates?

Like most importers, you may not want to buy machines and machines manufactured specifically for you and according to the specifications you requested, because you will bear the result of your order, but you will prefer those that are routinely produced by the factory and have been tested and proven effective.

When purchasing factory-designed products, you must ensure that the supplier will provide a comprehensive description of all product specifications, including detailed data sheets. If the supplier refuses or tries to evade providing these specifications, it is often not the owner of the factory, but a small trader.

The reason why I stress that you should be familiar with the technical specifications of the machines is that they must comply with the regulations and laws of the importing country, otherwise the import of machines that do not comply with the standards and import requirements may lead to the confiscation of imported machines by the customs authorities, in addition to the risk of heavy fines.

The main problem, when importing machines and machines from China, is that most of these machines are made for the domestic market and not for foreign markets, machines made for use in China may generally not comply with the mechanical and electrical safety standards of other countries and markets, so showing their compliance with your country’s standards is crucial.

It is also important to familiarize yourself with the characteristics, uses and functions of the machine you are considering buying, before negotiating the final selling price, to avoid overpaying prices while ensuring that the supplier maintains quality, so check the specifications of imported machines and certificates granted to machines, such as CE marking or the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM).

The importance of these certificates lies in the fact that:

  1. Ensures that the machine meets quality standards and meets regulatory standards.
  2. The presence of protection ratings also mentioned in the specification, such as water and dust protection ratings, ensures that the machines are not damaged while transporting to you.
  3. Ensure safety standards for machines
  4. Ensure that machinery imported from China conforms to the directives, provisions and customs laws of the importing country. This avoids the seizure of your goods or the payment of fines if the imported machines are non-standard.

Given the importance of all of the above, it is necessary to carefully study the specifications of the goods you want to import to ensure that the machines comply with the regulations set by the local authority and customs authorities.

4. Does the supplier provide after-sales services? Does the supplier ship the machine for you?

Machines of all kinds, whatever their quality, are prone to malfunctions, especially in cases of continuous use to which machines imported into factories are exposed. You have to ask whether the supplier will be committed to repairing the malfunctions in the importing country by carrying out maintenance and repair work for the machines, because sending the broken machine may be expensive and the machine stoppage may cause the entire production line to stop, you should expect to wait 30 days for the new spare parts to arrive, which may make the use of local technical workshops a better option.

Mostly Chinese suppliers offer free spare parts, but the condition that the importer pays the shipping cost. In some cases, it may be cheaper for you to buy parts locally, rather than paying shipping costs, not to mention import duties and other taxes.

So it’s best to keep a spare parts store and ask them to pay for shipping.

Choose the appropriate shipping method:

Determine the shipping method that suits your business needs. Machinery and equipment can usually be transported by sea, air or rail. Choose the most economical and reliable shipping method. Shipping costs and shipping methods are related to different countries. For shipping from China to your country, it is best to find a China freight forwarding company to serve you. Below is shipping information about shipping from China to different countries. If you are interested, you can click on the link to read:

Guide to Importing and Shipping Machinery and Equipment from China

5. How will the machine parts be packed?

In sea freight, imported machinery may remain exposed to the elements in an open environment on the deck of cargo ships. Exposure of machines to wind and salt water. It can harm your imported goods, as well as machines and machines can be exposed to rust as a result of moisture when transported by road freight, so it is necessary to ask the supplier how the machine parts will be packaged and packaged.

Some of the ways that can protect your goods when packaging:

1. Using a variety of protection techniques to prevent corrosion and rust is an essential first step before packaging. Depending on the size and condition of the equipment, one of the following layers of protection will be used:

  • Galvanizing: Cover your machines with layers of steel and zinc, usually the outer layer of zinc, because zinc is shock-absorbing, this outer layer also helps protect against collision and rust.
  • Paint: The paint is added on top as a separate layer covering the metal and helps prevent corrosion and rust.
  • Temperature-sensitive plastic coating. Heat is applied to its surface, causing it to shrink comfortably around machine lines.

2. Due to the importance of the stability of the machines and the risk of their slippage in sea freight, the freight contractor may use a pallet to secure the large size machines and then this robust pallet is packed, reducing the likelihood of any slippage during export.

You have to make sure that the supplier will ship the goods in a way that ensures their safety and arrival to you without any failure, because the cost of returning them in the event of any damage is not a significant matter, if you do not feel that the supplier is qualified for this task, you can use a packaging company, provided that the cost of this reduces the purchase price.

6. Do you know where to buy spare parts?

It is common for Chinese manufacturers to provide long-term guarantees, but it is the duty of the importer to document everything guaranteed by the supplier to be able to claim it, make sure of the terms of use of the warranty, starting with covering the costs of shipping machines or components in case of maintenance or replacement. These expenses are always borne by the importer.

You should check that the manufacturer has spare parts and in sufficient quantity to ensure that the machine works and faces any failure, because the lack of spare parts in stock means prolonged downtime.

7. What documents are required when importing machines and devices from China?

Import License

An import license is a permit that allows you to import the machinery and machinery you want as they are subject to government regulations. It specifies the quantity you can import, and is usually valid for one to 18 months

Insurance Certificate

This document, issued by an insurance company, certifies that the machines are insured against any loss or damage during transportation. It mentions the terms of delivery and helps customs to ascertain the duties payable on the goods.

Purchase order and letter of credit

A purchase order is a contract issued by the importer to the supplier confirming his intention to purchase the goods. It contains the details of the goods, their quantity, price, payment and delivery terms. Once the purchase order is completed, the importer contacts a bank to obtain a letter of credit.

A letter of credit is a letter from the bank of your choice that guarantees that you pay to the supplier on time, and in the event that you are unable to pay, the bank will cover the full or remaining amount of the price of the shipment.

Technical Terms Book

Customs authorities will ask you for a written explanation of the functions of imported machinery and machinery and an accurate description of their operation, which will help them determine the market value of the product.

Test Report

When customs authorities cannot evaluate and value your imported goods, they send a sample to an accredited government laboratory for testing. The laboratory tests the product and submits a test report, and on this basis the goods are cleared.

Industrial Licensing

An industrial license is the government’s permission for you as an importer to conduct your industrial project. The Ministry issues the license for the factory and it remains valid for a renewable period of three years. You can import by submitting a copy of it to customs.

8. What is the procedure for shipping machines and appliances from China?

When you need to import machines and machines that will be shipped across continents, you need to ensure that they are shipped in the safest way, starting from packaging and packaging, and ending with a thorough inspection of all items, to make sure no damage occurs.

To feel confident about the shipping process, you need to know the available packaging and shipping options, which are as follows:

  1. Containers

Containers are used to load large objects and their measurements range from 0.5 cubic meters to 1.5 cubic meters. Pallets or lubricants may be loaded into the container with machines to increase stability. Items of smaller equipment may be packaged and packaged before being placed in containers.

Containers offer maximum protection to machines against corrosion and other damage. This system is commonly used in sea freight, and smaller containers can also be shipped by rail or air.

  1. Jacks

Once the cargo ship reaches its destination, the containers are transported using cranes or forklifts. Then they are followed up and sorted by an advanced computer system.

  1. Railway train cars

Trains can be used to transport heavy machinery and large equipment. Machines are loaded, tied and secured carefully before shipment.

In international trade, careful planning makes a big difference. Before importing, be sure to share accurate information on the weight and dimensions of a single machine with your shipping agent, and be sure to clarify any concerns you have to ensure they know what they are doing.

By better understanding your needs, the company responsible for shipping and packaging will be fully equipped to determine the mode of transport that best suits your imported goods, thus the company will be able to conduct a comprehensive risk assessment before packaging.

Whether it’s shipping by rail, sea or air, be sure to work with a full-service carrier. Your valuable equipment reaches intact and undamaged, and you will have a clear understanding of the steps involved in the process. If you have questions about shipping any kind of machine,

China Freight Forwarder

9. What is the customs clearance procedure when importing machines and devices from China?

  1. The first step is to choose a good and reliable shipping agent who has already shipped goods similar to yours.
  2. After your goods start their journey, track them and prepare for their arrival, it can take up to weeks and up to a month to ship goods internationally.
  3. When your goods arrive you or the customs broker is usually notified within 5 days or less of their arrival at the port.
  4. Then you or the customs broker you have appointed to act on your behalf must submit the entry documents of the goods, which are as follows:
  • Bill of lading.
  • Commercial invoice.
  • Certificate of origin.
  • Packing list.
  • Arrival notice provided by the freight forwarder.
  1. You will expedite the customs clearance procedure for cross-border goods if the following information is complete and untainted:
  • Full commercial invoice data as standard.
  • The description of imported machines is clear and accurate.
  • Clearly describe the machines and their quantity in each box, box, or package by marking and numbers on each one.
  • The tags on the packages are indicated on your invoice and matched to them.
  1. Make arrangements for your customs broker to clear it from customs. If all goes well, you have the right to receive your shipment.
  2. If you choose door delivery, you can wait for your shipment to arrive at your specified address.
  3. Once you have received your imported goods and checked the quality, packaging, instructions and labels, it is best to send an email to your supplier and inform them that you have received your goods but have not reviewed them.

Importing machines and machines from China is a step that requires a lot of hard work. Especially if you step into it for the first time, you will find yourself overwhelmed with planning and details but it will get easier every time, and when you build your company and see it grow and succeed, you realize that it is worth the effort.

Scroll to Top