How to Import and Ship Cars from China to the Philippines


With the rapid development of China’s automobile manufacturing industry, more and more high-quality and cost-effective automobile products have attracted the attention of global consumers, including the Philippine market. In 2023, China became the world’s largest automobile exporter, with an export volume of 5.22 million vehicles, while the Philippines ranked 7th with 172,500 vehicles, and Thailand ranked 8th with more than 2,000 vehicles less than the Philippines.

Shipping from China to the Philippines is a complicated process that requires understanding of relevant laws and regulations, fees, time and necessary documents. This article will detail how to import cars from China to the Philippines and how to ship cars from China to the Philippines.

How to Import and Ship Cars from China to the Philippines

Why Import Cars from China to the Philippines

Quality and Price Advantages of Cars

China’s automobile manufacturing industry has made significant progress in recent years, not only with reliable product quality but also relatively reasonable prices. Philippine consumers can get a more cost-effective choice by importing Chinese cars.

China’s manufacturing strength lies not only in scale but also in efficiency. Compared with other markets, China’s production costs are generally much lower, and this advantage directly translates into buyer’s advantage.

But it’s not just the purchase price that is attractive. Competitive pricing of parts and affordable after-sales service further enhance the cost-effectiveness of importing cars from China. A report by Deloitte highlights that the total cost of ownership of Chinese cars is generally low, making it an attractive choice for personal use and commercial fleets.

Diversified Model Selection

The Chinese market offers a rich selection of car brands and models, ranging from economy cars to luxury models, from SUVs to electric vehicles, to meet the needs of different consumers. China’s vigorous promotion of electrification and sustainable transportation has led to a boom in innovation in the field of electric vehicles. Brands such as Weilai, BYD and Xiaopeng are not only competing, but often setting new standards in electric vehicle technology and design.

But innovation in the Chinese market is not limited to electric vehicles. Advances in safety features, infotainment systems and driver assistance technologies are increasingly common in Chinese cars, making them a competitive choice in the global market. Importers can now buy a range of cars to suit different tastes and requirements, all thanks to the reliability and technological prowess of Chinese manufacturing.

Policy support

To encourage the introduction of clean energy vehicles, the Philippine government has granted certain tax exemptions or incentives for environmentally friendly models such as electric vehicles, further reducing import costs.

Guide To Importing And Shipping Vehicles From China

Guide To Shipping Trucks And Buses From China

How to import cars from China to the Philippines

Preliminary preparations for importing cars from China to the Philippines

  • Obtain certification: Imported car manufacturers or importers need to obtain compulsory product certification (CCC) for the models to be imported.
  • Environmental information disclosure: Complete the environmental information disclosure of the models to be imported, including emission inspection information and pollution control technology information.
  • Import license: Apply for an import license from the relevant Philippine authorities as needed.

Process of importing cars from China to the Philippines

  • Customs declaration: Customs declaration companies declare to the Philippine Customs through a single window, including CCC certificate information, vehicle VIN information, etc., and accept online verification by the customs.
  • Compliance check: Obtain an Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) from the Philippine Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to ensure that the vehicle meets the Philippine emission standards.
  • Customs inspection: Customs officials inspect the vehicle to check the overall condition of the vehicle, VIN number and whether the documents are complete.
  • Pay taxes and fees: Pay customs duties, value-added tax and possible environmental taxes.
  • Vehicle registration: Register the vehicle at the Philippine Land Transportation Office (LTO), submit necessary documents and pay registration fees.

Things to note when importing cars from China to the Philippines

  • Choose a trusted importer or agent to simplify the process and assist with legal requirements.
  • Confirm the Philippines’ import policies, tariffs, and tax incentives in advance.
  • Make sure the vehicle meets the Philippines’ safety, environmental, and technical standards.

To learn how to import auto parts from China, click on the link:

How to import cars from China to the PhilippinesHow to import cars from China to the Philippines

How to Ship Cars from China to the Philippines

  • Contact a Chinese freight forwarding company that provides shipping services to Philippines. Basenton Logistics provides shipping services from China to Philippines.
  • Check shipping costs from China to Philippines.
  • Choose the best shipping method to ship your vehicle from China to the Philippines. Depending on your needs, you can choose the following transportation methods to the Philippines: Ro-Ro transportation service, container transportation service, and LCL service to Mexico.
  • Provide documentation to the transport company to book delivery of your vehicle from China to the Philippines.
  • Deliver vehicles to port or export warehouse for export from China to the Philippines
  • Payment to China Shipping Company
  • Send the release note or bill of lading to your customs clearance agent, customs broker or freight company in Philippines.

If you are interested in shipping cars from China to other countries, you can read the following posts:

What are the ways to ship cars from China to the Philippines?

Roll-on/roll-off
Best for work vehicles as your car will be driven onto the transport ship and transported safely in a huge cargo area similar to a parking lot. The main additional costs are customs clearance and taxes, which makes this our most affordable option.

You might be interested: A Guide To Shipping Cars From China By RoRo Ship

Shared container service
Stack multiple vehicles into a 40-foot container with our industry-leading steel stowage system. Although there will be an additional cost compared to our roll-on/roll-off service, you will share the additional cost of shipping in a securely enclosed container with other vehicle owners. Additional charges include: trailer and unloading fees, terminal handling fees, and customs clearance fees.

Full container load
As with our shared container service, your vehicle will be shipped in a fully enclosed 20-foot container or 40-foot container dedicated to your car. You’ll have the benefit of not having to wait for the container to reach capacity before shipping, but not having to share the additional costs of loading and unloading at the terminal with other owners, as well as the additional costs of unloading. The many benefits of container shipping outweigh the added cost, including increased safety and protection from the weather due to fully enclosed and secure containers.

Our shipping professionals will document the condition of your vehicle upon arrival, including loading into the container, with photo documentation that you can view online for your convenience.

Once your car is loaded and secured, the container door will be locked, preventing anyone from accessing its contents until it lands at its final destination. Your vehicle will be secured in a fully enclosed container and you are welcome to pack and transport other items inside the vehicle. Nonetheless, please keep everything safe as we accept no responsibility for any damage or loss of any kind. Once your vehicle reaches its final destination in Philippines, the container will be opened by our operators who will document the condition of the vehicle and the unloading process with photos.

How to Ship Cars from China to the PhilippinesHow to Ship Cars from China to the Philippines

Cost of shipping a car from China to Philippines

The total cost of importing a car from China is more than just the purchase price. It involves a variety of fees that can significantly increase your total investment if not carefully managed. Key components include:

  • Shipping costs: Costs can vary greatly depending on whether you choose ocean, air, or RoRo services. Factors such as the size of the car, the distance it is being shipped, and whether you choose standard or express shipping methods all play a crucial role.
  • Taxes: These fees are determined by the regulations of the importing country and can account for a large portion of the total cost. It is essential to understand the specific tariff rates, VAT, and other taxable items.
  • Insurance: Insurance covers any damage or loss during shipping and is usually a percentage of the car’s value.
  • Customs brokerage fees: Hiring a customs broker can simplify the customs clearance process, but it will also incur certain fees.
  • Local shipping and handling fees: Once the car arrives in the destination country, there may be fees associated with local transportation, unloading, and storage.

The average price for shipping a 40-foot container from China to the Philippines is $1,550 to $3,550. For more detailed costs, you can click on the post link: How Much Does It Cost To Ship From China To Philippines

You may also be interested in: Shipping Time From China To Philippines

What documents are needed to buy and ship new and used cars from China

Import documents

  • CCC certificate: Compulsory product certification certificate.
  • Environmental information disclosure documents: Emission inspection information and pollution control technology information.
  • Import license (if necessary): Permit document allowing vehicles to enter the Philippines.
  • Commercial invoice: Document proving the details of the transaction.
  • Packing list: Document recording how the goods are loaded into containers or other shipping equipment.

Transport documents

  • Bill of Lading (B/L): A transport document issued by the carrier that proves that the goods have been received for shipment and instructs the carrier to transport the goods to the designated destination.
  • Marine insurance policy (if sea transportation is selected): An insurance document that provides protection for risks that the goods may encounter during transportation.
  • Transport contract: A contract signed with the carrier that details the terms and responsibilities of transportation.

Customs clearance documents

  • Import declaration: A declaration document for imported goods submitted to the Philippine Customs, including detailed information, value, quantity, etc. of the goods.
  • Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC): A document issued by the Philippine Department of Environment and Natural Resources to confirm that the imported vehicle meets the environmental protection requirements of the Philippines.
  • Tax bill and proof of payment: official documents obtained after paying customs duties, VAT and other related taxes.
  • Vehicle certification documents: including vehicle purchase contract, factory certificate, vehicle identification number (VIN) certificate, etc.

Registration documents

  • Vehicle registration application form: application form obtained from the Philippine Land Transportation Office (LTO) for vehicle registration.
  • Owner’s identity certificate: the owner’s passport, residence certificate or other official identification documents.
  • Vehicle insurance policy: proof of vehicle insurance in accordance with Philippine laws.

Top 10 Countries For China’s Auto Exports In 2023

  1. Russia 909,000 vehicles
  2. Mexico 415,100 vehicles
  3. Belgium 217,400 vehicles
  4. Australia 214,600 vehicles
  5. UK 213,800 vehicles
  6. Saudi Arabia 213,600 vehicles
  7. Philippines 172,500 vehicles
  8. Thailand 170,600 vehicles
  9. UAE 160,000 vehicles
  10. Spain 138,700 vehicles

Note: Work with reputable and experienced importers, carriers and agents to ensure a smooth transportation process and safe arrival of goods. Basenton Logistics can help you transport your car from China to the Philippines safely and quickly. Contact Basenton Logistics to get the services you want.





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