Determine your HS or Schedule B number

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What is an HS number (HS code)?

The Harmonized System Classification is a standardized numerical method of classifying traded products. HS numbers (or HS codes) are used by customs authorities around the world to identify products for the assessing duties and taxes, among other things (see below).  HS codes are generally 10 digit long.  However, governments  harmonize (overlap) the HS codes up to first six digits. Additional digits are added to the HS number by governments to further distinguish products in certain categories. Tip: You may want to think of an HS code as an "export code."

What is a Schedule B number (Schedule B code)?
In the United States, numbers used to classify exported products are called Schedule B numbers.

Is there a difference between HS and Schedule B numbers?
Yes. The HS number is an internationally accepted code. The basic HS code contains 6-digits, known as a subheading. The Schedule B is a 10-digit code built upon the first 6 digits of the HS code. Additionally, the Schedule B code is a U.S.-specific coding system used to monitor U.S. exports (e.g., for export compliance and trade data collection).
HTS codes, also called HTS numbers, are administered by the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC). The U.S. HTS codes are used for classifying products imported into the United States. Tip: Think of the HTS code as the U.S. "import code."

Exporters need to know their product classification, i.e., Schedule B and HS numbers for many reasons including:  
  • Classifying physical goods for shipment to a foreign country;
  • Determining import tariff (duty) rates and figuring out if a product qualifies for a preferential tariff under a Free Trade Agreement (HS number);
  • Filing the Electronic Export Information (EEI); 
  • Completing shipping documents, such as shipper’s letter of instructions, commercial invoice or certificate of origin. (HS number);
  • Conducting market research including analyzing trade statistics.
How to find your Schedule B code?
You can find your product classification number by using Schedule B Search Engine. If you are still unsure of the best Schedule B code for your product, phone U.S. Government commodity classification experts at 1-800-549-0595, option 2.

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