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13.2.        HS as the recommended classification for IMTS compilation and dissemination. The International Convention on the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (HS Convention) was adopted by the Customs Cooperation Council (CCC) in Brussels on 14 June 1983, and entered into force on 1 January 1988 (HS88). The Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (popularly known as the Harmonized System, or HS) is a nomenclature comprising headings and subheadings and their related numerical codes, sections, and chapters, as well as Subheading Notes and the General Rules for the Interpretation of the Harmonized System, as set out in the Annex “Nomenclature of the Harmonized System” to the HS Convention.[1] The United Nations Statistical Commission, at its twenty-seventh session, hold from 22 February to 3 March 1993, recommended that countries adopt the HS for the compilation and dissemination of their trade statistics.[2] 

13.3.        Implementation of HS in IMTS compilation and dissemination. As of 2011, almost all countries use the HS for trade data compilation and dissemination. This is a very significant achievement, as it ensures the best possible international comparability of national trade data. However, experience shows that many countries face significant challenges in the consistent application of HS.



[1]  As of 7 January 2013, there were 146 contracting parties to the Convention, and about 60 countries or territories that were not contracting parties but were using the HS for customs/statistical purposes. The HS, when incorporated in the country’s customs tariff, becomes a national law. Entering incorrect tariff codes in the goods declaration may entail legal consequences.

[2] See Official Records of the Economic and Social Council, 1993, Supplement No. 6 (E/1993/26), para. 162 (d).