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UPS Supply Chain Solutions®

HS Code

What is an HS Code?

HS Code stands for Harmonized System Code. It is an international index used for categorizing goods, enabling consistent classification and taxation. The HS Code consists of 21 sections and numerous subsections that allow shippers to describe their goods in great detail using only numbers.


The World Customs Organization (WCO) is responsible for updating and adding to the index, which it does every five years.


Countries will often customize HS Codes by adding onto them, like HTS codes in the United States. In cases where countries have individual versions of the HS Code, use the code unique to the country into which you are importing your goods to estimate duties.


Infographic depicting the elements of an HTS code

Related Terms

HTS Code Customs Broker Customs Bond


Related FAQs


What is a customs broker?

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