One of the most expensive precious metals on Earth and definitely one of the most costly items based on weight, gold is valued around the world. Both its beauty as jewelry and many uses which include dentistry, electronics and even medicinally encourage it's widespread demand. With something so valuable and in such high demand, it’s no wonder you’d want to start importing gold into the U.S. Yet for these very reasons, it makes importing the product to be a potentially dicey affair if you don’t know what you’re doing.
But it doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom. Importing gold into the U.S. can be a simpler process as long as you know how it’s regulated, learn about the customs clearance process and lean on a knowledgeable customs broker to assist you in the endeavor.
There was a time in America where U.S. citizens couldn’t own or trade gold, outside of some personal jewelry or coins. However, since 1975, the members of the country have been free to buy, sell and trade the precious metal as they see fit.
So gold can indeed be imported into the U.S. for various purposes. As a country, the United States has certainly stocked up on it. America easily has the most gold holdings in the world as a country with over 8,000 tons. Germany, for comparison, has nearly 3,400 tons. And that doesn’t count the private holdings of citizens either.
If the value of the gold imported is equal to or greater than $10,000 in value, you must fill out a FinCEN 105 form. A Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer will need the items declared to him or her.
Gold is regulated by several United States agencies but not in the ways you might think. There are four regulatory bodies to think about when importing gold that emcompasses all precious metals to one degree or another.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the CBP make sure that any pieces of gold entering the country are within 1/2 of a carat of the stated fineness. Anything outside of that variation is prohibited. This is for the specific commodity in question though. The CBP also has the power to crack down on illegal practices surrounding gold production.
The next two agencies have regulations that affect gold but cover any commodity that enters the U.S. Continuing along that vein is the International Trade Commission (ITC), which determines if unfair methods of competition took place. If that’s determined to be the case, the ITC will restrict such imports. Lastly, the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) can impose sanctions on importers if it violates any of its administered regulations.
Knowing the general parameters of importing gold may be enough to undertake the process. However, having a very clear idea about the areas in which a licensed customs broker can ease the pressure on your business or just provide help for aspects of the importation that you either don’t want to or cannot do can be a huge help.
For instance, a regular customs bond won’t work for the importation of gold. A specific one especially for precious metals must be acquired and implemented before your first shipment leaves its country of origin. A customs broker who has a comprehensive variety of services should be able to sell this type of bond with no problem whatsoever.
Another neat feature of using a customs broker is the assistance they provide in helping you fill out all the forms associated with clearing customs. These forms have to be filled out to exacting standards, with no incomplete or inaccurate information, plus filed with the CBP before the items are allowed to even be on their way. These forms are numerous and also lengthy, so this might be a good area for your business to invest in getting some guidance.
You might wonder what happens once the gold reaches the border crossing either over land or via a port of entry? It’s not as simple as the CBP simply asking you to come get your stuff. It must undergo inspection and pass muster before it is considered for release. A licensed customs broker can act for you, both in clearing the goods and then accepting them on your behalf. Adding another layer of value, most customs brokers have connections with third-party logistics (3PL) companies and can also negotiate freight shipping services for you to get the gold to its intended destination.
As you can see, using a licensed customs broker comes with a lot of amenities that you just don’t get when trying to do it yourself. While there is a cost involved, it can be well worth the money to have someone else expertly handle it.
Now that you’re fully prepared to start importing gold into the U.S., it’s time to take your business to the next level by linking up with USA Customs Clearance, powered by AFC International. We have several crucial services to offer your operations that can save you time and money while also reducing the stress of clearing customs.
Since it’s been established that gold requires a specialized customs bond in order to be imported, partnering with USA Customs Clearance ensures that you can purchase this in order to be able to import with no holdups. We can even renew your bond on your behalf so it doesn’t lapse.
Going down the line of the advantages of using USA Customs Clearance brings us to our 1-on-1 import consulting sessions. If you’ve ever had a list of questions or were unclear about any aspect of what it takes to get your goods across U.S. borders, these sessions are for you. You get uninterrupted time with a licensed customs broker in an information-packed 30 minutes where you’ll clearly and concisely learn about the various aspects of successfully clearing through the CBP.
So when you’re getting prepared to begin importing gold into the U.S., give the experts at USA Customs Clearance a call at 855.912.0406 to get set up for your import consulting session today.