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Country of Origin Certification

Summary

The customs-approved registered exporter system refers to a process where the exporters who are validated by the customs authority as being capable of proving the country of origin of the goods can benefit from simplified issuance process of a certificate of origin or any other attached document.

Types of Approved Registered Exporter and Certificate Authority
Types of Approved Registered Exporter and Certificate Authority
Classification Business-specific Approved Exporter Product-specific Approved Exporter
Scope All agreements, all goods Agreements and tariff subheadings (HS 6) accepting the certification
Validity 5 years 5 years
Certificate authority Customs office of Seoul, Busan, Incheon, Daegu, Gwangju, and Pyeongtaek*
Certification standard The capability of proving the country of origin and compliance with laws and regulations in accordance with the agreements The capability of proving the country of origin in accordance with HS 6

Competent Customs

Competent Customs
Application of Certification and Competent Customs Jurisdiction
Customs office of Seoul Jurisdiction of the customs office of Seoul, Anyang, Sokcho, Daejeon, Cheonan, Cheongju, Guro, Seongnam, Uijeongbu, Donghae, Daesan, Chungju, Paju, Wonju and Goseong
Customs office of Busan Jurisdiction of the customs office of Busan, Yongdang, Gimhae, Geoje, Masan, Yangsan, Changwon, Sasang, Sacheon, Jinju and Tongyeong
Customs office of Incheon Jurisdiction of the customs office of Incheon, Suwon, Ansan, Bupyeong, Incheon International Airport and Gimpo
Customs office of Daegu Jurisdiction of the customs office of Daegu, Gumi, Pohang and Ulsan
Customs office of Gwangju Jurisdiction of the customs office of Gwangju, Gwangyang, Mokpo, Yeosu, Gunsan, Jeju, Iksan and Jeonju
Customs of Pyeongtaek Jurisdiction of the customs office of Pyeongtaek
Jurisdiction of the customs office of Pyeongtaek

If an exporter is registered as an approved exporter, he or she can benefit from simplified document issuance process and the below. In the case of the Korea–EU FTA, an exporter who exports goods worth more than EUR 6,000 and seeks for preferential tariff must be registered as an approved exporter.

Benefits for Approved Registered Exporter
FTA Before Registration as an Approved Exporter After Registration as an Approved Exporter
Korea–ASEAN
Korea–Singapore
Korea–India
  • Prepare an application for a certificate of origin (online application)
  • Submit attached documents
    • A copy of the export permit (no need if online verification is possible)
    • Invoice of the transaction agreement
    • Invoice of the transaction agreement
    • Cost and production statement
    • Supporting evidence document to the above statement
  • On-site verification (if necessary)
  • Prepare an application for a certificate of origin
    (online application)
  • No attached document
  • On-site verification may be waived
Korea–EU
  • Certificate of origin available for goods less than EUR 6,000 (preferential tariff applicable)
  • Voluntary issued certificate of origin (usually on the registration invoice) signed by the exporter
  • Electronic documents unavailable
  • Certificate of origin issuance available only for approved exporters in case of goods worth more than EUR 6,000
  • Voluntary issued certificate of origin (usually on the registration invoice); no need for the signature of the exporter
  • Electronic documents unavailable
Korea–EFTA
  • Voluntary issued certificate of origin (usually on the registration invoice); no need for the signature of the exporter
  • Electronic documents unavailable
  • Voluntary issued certificate of origin (usually on the registration invoice); no need for the signature of the exporter
  • Electronic documents unavailable
Electronic documents unavailable
  • Certificate of origin available for goods less than USD 2,000 (preferential tariff applicable)
  • Certificate of origin issuance is available only for approved exporters in case of goods worth more than USD 2,000
Others The system is not applicable
Approved Exporter Certification Evaluation Standard (Summary)

Business-specific Evaluation Standard for Approved Exporter Certification


1. (Process) The exporter must have a computerized system or an operation manual that includes the following functions or procedures to manage the country of origin of exports or products:

  • Manage the HS Code and the country of origin of exports and products
  • Manage the agreement-specific origin determination standard applied on exports and products
  • Correct determination of the origin, selection, and verification of major exports and products
  • Manage the supporting evidence documents to prove the country of origin (to prepare for verification)

2. (Specialist) The exporter must designate a manager who is capable of proving the country of origin to operate the system.


It is possible to designate a third-party origin expert. Third-party experts usually refer to customs agents.
(Article 13, Paragraph 9 of the Special Act on Implementation of FTA)


3. (Storage of documents) The history of the certificate of origin preparation must be kept in a place and managed.


4. (Compliance with laws and regulations) The exporter must not have irregularity records as follows:

  • An exporter who has not refused origin inspection for the last two years
  • An exporter who has not breached the obligation to store relevant documents (including those who have corrected the practice at the request of authorities)
  • An exporter who has not applied for, prepared, or issued a certificate of origin by fraudulent or any other unlawful means for the last two years.

Product-specific Evaluation Standard for Approved Exporter Certification


1. (Meeting the country of origin standard) Exports or products (of HS 6) must meet the origin determination standard according to the Agreement with the importing country.

  • Manage the HS Code and the country of origin of exports and products
  • Manage the agreement-specific origin determination standard applied on exports and products
  • Correct determination of the origin, selection, and verification of major exports and products
  • Manage the supporting evidence documents to prove the country of origin (to prepare for verification)

2. (Specialist) The exporter must designate a manager who is capable of proving the country of origin to operate the system.


It is possible to designate a third-party origin expert. Third-party experts usually refer to customs agents.
(Article 13, Paragraph 9 of the Special Act on Implementation of FTA)


3. (Storage of documents) The history of the certificate of origin preparation must be kept in a place and managed.

Requirements for Origin Expert

In the Customs-approved Registered Exporter system, it is essential to designate an origin expert who is responsible for managing and operating the exporter company’s entire origin management system.


The origin expert must be as follows:
1) Origin management license holders
2) Any person who obtains a total score of more than 10 or 20 points in the following requirements.

If a third-party is designated as an origin expert, he or she should be a licensed customs agent, lawyer, certified public accountant, etc.

Follow-up Management of Approved Exporter

The approved exporter shall voluntarily review the information with regard to the certification every year from the approval date and submit the results to the Customs. If there is a change of information, the exporter shall report the change to the competent customs. When the expiration date is approaching, the exporter can extend the certification by applying for an extension 30 days before the expiration date.

Change Request Application


If an approved exporter has any changes in the information with regard to the certification including the company name, business registration number or origin expert, he or she shall apply for change of information to competent customs by submitting a supporting evidence document. However, if there are substantial changes including cases where the company’s identity or continuity is changed by mergers and acquisitions or spin-offs, errors on product-specific HS Code occur, or the origin determination standard is changed, the exporter shall undergo the process of new certification.

Voluntary Inspection


Whether the certification requirements are continuously met by approved exporters will be checked. To this end, an approved exporter shall prepare a voluntary checklist and submit it to the competent customs two months before the month when the first certification date is included.

Extension (Renewal) Application


An approved exporter may apply for an extension of certification by submitting all the related documents needed for certification to the director of competent customs 30 days before the expiration date.

The information above is provided only as a reference for users and we are not legally liable for the errors in the content or the consequences of use of the information.
Please use the information above for reference purposes only and confirm the final information with relevant domestic law or administrative agencies.

The information above is provided by the Korea International Trade Association.

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