Guide to shipping from Germany to Singapore

5 Mins Read
facebook sharing button
twitter sharing button
linkedin sharing button
Smart Share Buttons Icon Share

Singapore values German exports, with the demand for German imports in Singapore continuing to grow. Foreign imports from Germany accounted for US$10.3 billion in Singapore in 2021, according to ASEAN Briefing. This demonstrates the importance of trade relations between Germany and Singapore as both countries look to reap mutual benefits through close trading ties. The most common imports from Germany are electrical machinery and equipment, machinery, electrical appliances, nuclear reactors, optical, medical, surgical and photographic equipment, vehicles and their parts and accessories, as well as pharmaceutical products. 

However, shipping from Germany to Singapore can be challenging, especially if you are not familiar with the regulations and processes involved. To help simplify the task and ensure that your items arrive at their destination on time, this in-depth guide will cover all the essential information you need to know when you ship between these two countries so that you can get your items moved safely, quickly and affordably. Whether you are sending something internationally for business or personal reasons, this comprehensive guide will help you get your delivery right the first time around.


How DHL Express Can Help you with your clinical trial logistics?

Things to take note of when shipping from Germany to Singapore 

1. Restricted and prohibited items

Different countries have a list of different items that are either controlled or disallowed entry into their customs borders. Some countries require exporters to apply for specific permit licenses to bring in certain goods. It’s important for exporters to take note of these regulations so as not to have their goods denied entry or experience delays at the borders due to not having the right paperwork. For example, when it comes to shipping to Singapore, prohibited items such as chewing gum, firecrackers, controlled drugs and seditious and treasonable materials are not allowed to be imported into the country. Understanding the customs clearance process will allow exporters to have their goods successfully imported. 

2. Export procedure

Shipping goods from Germany involves several steps that need to be followed in order to comply with legal requirements and ensure a smooth and successful transaction. 

  • Obtain an Economic Operators Registration and Identification (EORI) number – Businesses need to obtain a unique identification code. This is required for all companies that export goods from Germany to countries outside the European Union (EU). 

  • Determine the Harmonised System (HS) code  – Each product is assigned a commodity code which determines the amount of customs duty and taxes that need to be paid. 

  • Obtain an export licence (if required) – Certain products may require an export licence, which can be obtained from the Federal Office of Economic Affairs and Export Control (BAFA).

  • Declare goods for export – Businesses should present the goods to be exported to customs and any necessary export authorisation or license to the customs office. The export declaration must be submitted electronically through the Export Control System. The customs office checks that the goods match what was declared and then supervises their physical departure from the country. 

3. Important documents to prepare

The customs declaration must include the commercial invoice along with the export declaration, and any necessary export authorisation or license. The commercial invoice is a record of the transaction between the exporter and importer. It provides information on the transaction, such as:

  • Code, number, name, quantity and price of the item;

  • Destination of the goods and the address of the person or place of reception;

  • Name and registration number of the transport company;

  • Place of warehousing.

Import regulations in Singapore

1. Taxes and duties 

When goods are transported into Singapore from another country, taxes or duties may need to be paid. Dutiable goods, which require you to pay both taxes and duties, include:

  • Intoxicating liquors

  • Tobacco products

  • Motor vehicles

  • Petroleum products

All other imports, including approved foods and consumer products or electronics, are subject to GST. When shipping from Germany to Singapore, you must determine which category your product belongs to in order to transport it into Singapore successfully.

2. Import licence

Before shipping goods to Singapore from Germany, importers need to get a customs permit. This is like a license for import. To get one, they need to register with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) in Singapore or an issuing agency to get a Unique Entity Number (UEN). Once they have that, they can activate their Customs Account. It is advisable to appoint a Declaring Agent, like DHL Express, to get the permit for them but importers can also do it themselves. All permit applications must be submitted through TradeNet. During the import process, importers will need to show the customs permit and other documents that are requested, such as invoices or air waybills. For more information, check out DHL Express’ guide on how to import goods to Singapore.

How long does it take to ship from Germany to Singapore?

DHL Express is a reputable logistics partner for importing goods into Singapore. The time needed to get the goods to Singapore depends on what type of shipping service you use. Choosing the right courier for your international shipping needs is more than just searching for lowest pricing. At DHL Express, our dedication to professionalism and quality is reflected in both fast delivery times and competitive rates. Our Time-Definite (TDI) solutions ensure your shipments from Germany reach Singapore at a time convenient for you and your recipients:

DHL Express Urgent, Time-Sensitive Shipments (Delivered on Next Possible Business Day)
Express 9:00 Deliver before 9am
Express 10:30 Deliver before 10.30am
Express 12:00 Deliver before 12pm
Express Worldwide Deliver before end of the day
May Labour Day - May 1
DHL Express Same Day (Delivered within the quickest possible duration)
Jetline Delivered with a 24-hour target

Presently, there is a temporary service adjustment to the duration of delivery. Parcels from Germany to Singapore may require one additional day of transit time.

Import from Germany to Singapore with DHL Express

Shipping from Germany to Singapore with DHL Express ensures maximum efficiency and convenience when it comes to transporting your goods. From Frankfurt to Munich, Berlin to Hamburg and Stuttgart to Cologne, DHL Express guarantees the fastest transit of your shipments, with no delay in delivery. From start to finish, the experienced personnel will ensure that your overseas shipment, no matter the size, is safely transported to its destination on time, making them an ideal partner for a successful global trading experience. Open a DHL Express business account now.