Following Laos’ announcement requiring importers and exporters to register with the Ministry of Industry and Commerce (MOIC), the MOIC has released a comprehensive list of products that are subject to the registration requirement. Traders that import or export goods on the list, which was finalized on June 9, 2023, and made public on June 28 in MOIC Notification No. 1224, must register with the MOIC by August 31, 2023, to obtain a certificate authorizing their import or export activities.
The notification specifies four main categories of goods for which importers and exporters must register with the Department of Import and Export (DIMEX) of the MOIC: agricultural products, construction materials, and edible and nonedible consumer goods.
The exact products in each category are listed below, along with the corresponding Harmonized System codes from the World Customs Organization:
Enterprises engaged in the import and export of the goods listed in the table above must complete registration by August 31, 2023. Imports and exports of the listed goods by any enterprise not registered with the DIMEX will be prohibited after the deadline. The MOIC is also expected to add certain goods to the list in the future, but information on the timing and content of these additions is not yet available.
Enterprises that have completed registration must also ask the Bank of Lao PDR (BOL) to certify their accounts held at commercial banks, after which they must ask the relevant commercial banks to convert their current bank accounts into import-export accounts.
For more details on Laos’ new registration rules for importers and exporters, or on any aspect of international trade involving Laos, please contact Tilleke & Gibbins at [email protected].