Steps of using ACP, how foreign entity can import into Japan by ACP

ACP stands for, Attorney for Customs Procedure. In principle, foreign entities cannot become the Importer of Record – IOR. However, if the entity appoints an ACP, the foreign entity can become the IOR. Let’s look at the steps of how you import your goods by appointing ACP.  1st step is “Regulatory check”.  “ACP registration” is the second step.   And lastly “start shipment of the goods to Japan”.

As a first step, we need to check the eligibility to handle the goods, especially by looking at import regulations of the goods. ACP is not capable to handle all kinds of goods. If the goods are subject to specific regulations such as Food Sanitation Act, Act on Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices, or PSE/PSC, the non-resident entity shall not be allowed to import by appointing ACP. So, we always check the eligibility as a first step. We can support you to make a decision whether your goods is regulated item or not.

The second step is to proceed with ACP registration. The foreign entity and ACP together, need to submit ACP application documents to a respective Japan Customs Office. ACP can lead the preparation of the application documents on behalf of the foreign entity, but some information is necessary to provide by the foreign entity such as Company Registry, Power of Attorney, etc. Under the application process, ACP has a series of discussions with Japan Customs. At this timing, we should also discuss with Customs Officers regarding how to set a proper customs value of the import goods. In total, it takes 2 weeks to complete the ACP registration on average.

Once we obtain the acceptance letter from the Japan Customs Office, now you’re entitled to become an IOR. You can start shipping your goods to Japan by using one of the logistics providers. In the meantime, ACP leads the preparation of the documents required for the import clearance, such as invoices and evidence materials of the customs value to be used. When the products arrive in Japan, ACP will coordinate these documents with the designated logistics provider, so that the logistics provider can proceed with import clearance in Japan. Once the import clearance has been done, the logistics provider can deliver the goods to the destination where the foreign entity would like to send them, such as the Amazon FC warehouse in Japan.


YouTube – The steps of how foreign entities can import to Japan by using ACP



[Our Service]

Our ACP Service


[Knowledge Pages]

What is ACP? – Attorney for Customs Procedures

Steps of using ACP, how foreign entity can import into Japan by ACP

What is IOR? – Importer of Record

Amazon won’t become an IOR

Customs Valuation System in Japan

Customs Valuation When You Import By ACP

Consumption Tax in Japan


ACP’s Limitation

ACP’s Qualification

ACP’s registration



[Recent Updates]

ACP Japan Became Amazon’s SPN Provider as Qualified ACP Service Provider

IOR Service


Guidance by Amazon

According to the seller central website in Amazon, there is a guidance by Amazon that non-resident entity needs to appoint an ACP or IOR. You may check on this link:

Non-resident requirements

A Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) seller who lives outside of Japan (non-residents) and would like to import goods into an Amazon Japan fulfillment center for storage and order fulfillment must first designate an Import of Record (IOR) and /or Attorney for Customs Procedure (ACP). This must be accomplished in advance of any importations. In general, any person who is a resident of Japan can be appointed as an IOR and/or ACP. Neither Amazon nor any of its entities in Japan may act as the IOR/ACP on the customs declaration, only the FBA seller or their designated IOR/ACP. Amazon, Seller Central, Japan Tax and Regulatory Considerations

Also, you can check the document developed by Amazon “Understand ACP and IOR guidance”.

Understand ACP and IOR

If you do not have a Japanese entity to act as the importer of record, it is mandatory that you appoint an Attorney for Customs Procedure (ACP). Overseas Sellers, as non-resident importers, can generally rely on a program called ACP to help bring their inventory into Japan. An ACP is a resident Japanese entity who registers with Japan Customs as your agent to help with entries and communications. Please note ACP does not fully take over the whole responsibility of an importer. You must ensure that your goods comply with the local laws and regulations as a part of your responsibility. Amazon, Understand ACP and IOR guidance

Import into Japan by ACP – Atorney for Customs Procedure