ACP Service – Attorney for Customs Procedure

What is ACP? – Attorney for Customs Procedure

In principle, Japan Customs does not permit a foreign entity to act as the Importer of Record (*IOR).

But the foreign entity can act as a non-resident importer (IOR – Importer of Record) if you appoint an ACP (Attorney for Customs Procedure) who can handle the customs procedure on your behalf.

We, ACP japan provide this service as being ACP. On behalf of non-resident clients, we support by ensuring the import customs procedure.

We support many import projects including E-commerce such as Amazon’s FBA (Fulfillment By Amazon) program and Rakuten for the international sellers.

Please feel free to contact us!

Our ACP service (basic service line-up)

ACP Japan’s strength is that we, qualified customs specialists, also have been experienced many ACP projects including Amazon FBA, for sure we can support as ACP on behalf of your importing goods to Japan. The examples of the ACP services, but not limited :

  • The preparation works for ACP Application to a certain Japan Customs Office
  • Facilitate consultation with Japan Customs Office to obtain the ACP approval
  • Communication with stakeholders such as Logistics provider and Customs Office on behalf of a non-resident client, to ensure the goods can be safely importing.
  • Prepare the documentations for the calculation of Customs Value (Customs Valuation Formula), in accordance with an appropriate compliance under the Japan Tariff Customs Law.
  • Documents keeping, required under the article 95 – Japan Customs Law

How we proceed the works

Step.1) Please send us information through the contact form, regarding:

    • The website (URL link) or catalogue of the exact goods planning to import to Japan.
    • Approximate volume, varieties, and shipping frequency of the goods to import to Japan.

Step.2) ACP Japan to submit quotation and scope of works, for a specific client.

Step.3) Once the client agrees with the quotation, we’ll proceed signing of a service agreement between us.

Step.4) Then, we’ll start preparation of documentation regarding ACP application. The documents we need to prepare are, for instance, power of attorney, a certificate of company registry, the calculation formula of the customs valuation.

Step.5) Once set of documentations prepared, we will start communication with Japan Customs Office to obtain an approval of ACP.

Our strengths

  • Professional of Customs and International Trade – The CEO, as a Certified Customs Specialist in Japan – Mr. Sawada has been providing consulting services in the Trade & Customs area for many years. He was in a management position at KPMG, then started with his own company – SK Advisory to continue the customs-related services to the international clients.
  • Fully compliance in accordance with Japanese Customs Law – Maintaining the service quality with full compliance with Japanese Customs Law. ACP Japan is capable to manage all the necessary import compliance issues, including the classification of HS code, and setting of the appropriate Customs Valuation of the import goods to Japan.
  • Experienced and credible partner – As ACP Japan has been providing ACP services to many clients as demand has increased, you can totally rely on us as a credible partner. We registers 40+ ACP customers every year, the customers from around the world. In this way, all customers successfully became non-resident IOR – Importer of Record in Japan. You can see a list of our customers in here “Experiences”.
  • Qualified ACP service provider in Amazon SPN (Service Provider Network) – ACP Japan has officially become a qualified ACP service provider in Amazon’s Service Provider Network (SPN) under the Compliance category.


Our Customers

How the Japanese New Invoice System affects?  – Advantage of using ACP –

Recently, many companies register JCT (Japanese Consumption Tax) because the new invoice system for JCT will start in October 2023. The concept of the new invoice system is very similar to the EU’s VAT invoice system.

Your Japanese customer can’t claim input tax credits unless the sellers(suppliers) issue a qualified invoice that is written a JCT number. To issue a qualified invoice, sellers(suppliers) need to be a taxable entity and get a JCT number.

Since the seller becomes a taxable entity, the seller is obligated to file JCT tax returns on a regular basis.

For the case of a non-resident entity, when you import and sell to customers in Japan
(1) Pay import JCT to a customs office, 10% of the import customs value when you import
(2) Collect JCT from a customer in Japan, 10% of the sales price when you sell
(3) Submit JCT tax return to a tax office periodically
   (3-1) If you paid (1) as IOR = Importer, which means you appoint ACP, then you’re required to pay only the difference amount (2) – (1)
   (3-2) If you paid (1) but you were not IOR = Importer, then you’re required to pay all the amount of (2). You can’t deduct (1).


Please be careful that only the IMPORTER can deduct the import consumption tax at the time of tax filing. In other words, if another IOR service provider became the IMPORTER when you import, basically it would not be possible for the non-resident entity to deduct the import consumption tax. Therefore, you have to pay all the amount of (2) to a tax office.

On the other hand, if you import with ACP, means that you became an IMPORTER thus you can deduct the import consumption tax, when you do JCT tax return. Therefore, you only need to pay the difference amount (2) – (1) to a tax office.

This is one of the significant advantages to use ACP service, not IOR service.

For this reason, we strongly recommend using ACP so that you can become IOR.


Our Tax Representative service (optional)

We, ACP Japan provide one-stop services by supporting as ACP and Tax Representative for Japanese Consumption Tax (JCT) issues. We provide following services by collaborating with a Tax Accountant to ensure the all the service to be served in accordance with Tax Laws.

  • Support notification to become a taxable company for Japan Consumption Tax.
  • Support notification of tax representative appointment.
  • Support preparation/submission of the JCT return.
  • Communication with stakeholders including National Tax Office.
  • Cash handling support (e.g. Payment of the JCT to National Tax Office)

  Please see, the details of the article for Japanese Consumption Tax (VAT) issues.