General Administration of Press and Publications of the People’s Republic of China
General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China
Decree No. 53
The “Audiovisual Product Import Management Rules” were passed in March 2011 by the first admiinistration meeting of the General Administration of Press and Publications and General Administration of Customs, are hereby promulgated, and take effect on the day of promulgation
General Administration of Press and Publications
General Administration of Customs
6 April 2011
Audiovisual Product Import Management Rules
Article 1: In order to strengthen audiovisual product import management, promote international cultural exchange and cooperation, enrich the popular masses’ cultural life, according to the “Audiovisual Product Management Regulations” and relevant State regulations, these Rules are formulated.
Article 2: Audiovisual products as named in these Rules, refers to audiotapes, videotapes, records, laser audio discs, laser videodiscs, etc. with recorded content.
Article 3: These Rules apply to all finished audiovisual products imported from abroad and audiovisual products imported for publishing use or other purposes.
Publishing as named in the previous article, includes utilization of information network publishing.
Where audiovisual products are used for radio or television broadcasts, radio and television laws and administrative regulations apply.
Article 4: The General Administration of Press and Publications is responsible for work concerning nationwide audiovisual product import such as supervision, management, content examination, etc.
County-level or higher local People’s Government administrative press and publications departments according to these Rules are responsible for imported audiovisual products supervision and management work within their administrative areas.
All levels’ Customs are responsible for audiovisual product import supervision and management work within their professional scope.
Article 5: Audiovisual product import business activities shall obey the Constitutions and relevant laws and regulations, persist in the orientation of serving the people and serving Socialism, disseminate thoughts, virtues, science and technology, and cultural knowledge beneficial for economic development and social progress.
Article 6: The State prohibits import of audiovisual products with the following content:
(1) content contradicting the basic principles determined in the Constitution;
(2) content endangering the unity of the nation, sovereignty or territorial integrity;
(3) content that divulges State secrets, endangers national security or damages State honour or interests;
(4) content that incites ethnic hatred or discrimination, undermines the solidarity of the ethnicities, or infringes upon ethnic customs and habits;
(5) content that propagates evil cults or superstition;
(6) content that disturbs public order or destroys public stability;
(7) content that propagates obscenity, gambling, violence or instigates crimes;
(8) content that insults or slanders others, or infringes upon the lawful rights and interests of others;
(9) content that endangers public ethics or excellent folk cultural traditions;
(10) other content prohibited by laws, regulations or State provisions.
Article 7: The State implements a permit system for establishment of finished audiovisual product import work units.
Chapter II: Import work units
Article 8: Finished audiovisual product import business is conducted by General Administration of Press and Approved-approved finished audiovisual product import work units; without approval, no work unit or individual may engage in finished audiovisual product import.
Article 9: For establishment of a finished audiovisual product import business work unit, the following conditions shall be met:
(1) having the name and articles of association of a finished audiovisual product import business work unit;
(2) having a sponsoring work unit and a controlling authority conforming to General Administration of Press and Publications accreditation conditions;
(3) having a fixed business scope;
(4) having capacity for preliminary screening of imported audiovisual product content;
(5) having funds corresponding to audiovisual product import business;
(6) having fixed business premises;
(7) other conditions provided by laws, administrative regulations and State provisions
Article 10: For establishment of a finished audiovisual product import business work unit, an application shall be put to the General Administration of Press and Publications, after examination and approval, and obtaining the General Administration of Press and Issued-issued audiovisual product import business permit, a business permit must be obtained from the administrative industry and commerce management entities according to the law on the basis of the permit.
For establishment of an audiovisual product import business work unit, corresponding formalities must also be conducted according to the provisions of foreign trade laws and administrative regulations.
Article 11: Work units such as libraries, audiovisual material libraries, scientific institutions, schools, etc., importing finished audiovisual products for research or teaching reference, shall entrust conducting of import examination and approval formalities to a General Administration of Press and Publications-approved finished audiovisual product import business work unit
Article 12: Audiovisual publishing work units may engage in imported audiovisual product publishing business within their approved publishing business scope
Chapter III: Import examination
Article 13: The State implements a permit management system over imported audiovisual products, which shall be reported to the General Administration of Press and Publications for content examination before import, and may only be imported after examination, approval and obtaining permit documents.
Article 14: The General Administration of Press and Publications establishes an audiovisual product content examination committee, to be responsible for examining imported audiovisual product content. Under the committee, an office is established, to be responsible for daily work concerning imported audiovisual product content examination.
Article 15: For importing finished audiovisual products, the audiovisual products import business work unit puts forward an application with the General Administration of Press and Publications and submits the following documents and materials:
(1) an imported audio or video product reporting form;
(2) an import agreement draft or order form;
(3) programme samples, Chinese and foreign language lyrics;
(4) other materials required for content examination.
Article 16: Importing audiovisual products for publishing use, shall be applied for with the General Administration of Press and Publications and the following documents and materials are to be submitted:
(1) an imported audio or video product reporting form;
(2) Chinese and foreign language text drafts of a copyright trade agreement, a copyright authorization letter and National Copyright Administration registration documents;
(3) programme samples;
(4) Chinese and foreign language songbooks, lyrics or dialogue;
(5) other materials required for content examination.
Article 17: For importing audiovisual products used in exhibitions or shows, the exhibiting or show activity organizing work units puts forward an application, and reports the audiovisual product catalogue and samples to the General Administration of Press and Publications for content examination. Customs will manage this as temporarily imported goods.
Article 18: Import work units may not change the original name and content of the sample submitted to the General Administration of Press and Publications for content examination without authorization.
Article 19: The General Administration of Press and Publications makes a decision of approval or non-approval within 30 days of the day of receiving the audiovisual product import application. To those approved, an audiovisual product import approval note is issued; to those not approved, the reasons shall be explained.
The content of an audiovisual product import approval not may not be changed, where change is required, it shall be conducted again. The audiovisual product import approval note is valid for use in customs declarations once, and may not be used multiple times. More specifically, where it concerns finished audiovisual products, the approval note is valid in that year; where it concerns audiovisual products used for publication, the term of validity of the approval note is one year.
Chapter IV: Import management
Article 20: Audiovisual products imported without examination or approval, may not be published, reproduced, wholesaled, retailed, rented or commercially screened by any work unit or individual.
Article 21: No work unit or individual may conduct commercial reproduction, wholesale, retail, rental or commercial screening of audiovisual products imported for research or teaching reference, or use in exhibitions or shows.
Where audiovisual products imported for use in exhibitions or shows are needed to be sold or donated domestically, before sale or donation, approval formalities must be conducted again as import of finished products according to these Rules.
Article 22: Audiovisual product import agreements or contracts concluded by import work units with foreign parties shall conform to the provisions of Chinese laws and regulations.
Article 23: Publishing of imported audiovisual products, shall conform to the requirement of the General Administration of Press and Publications approval document, the name of the programme and programme content may not be changed without authorization, and the approved Chinese programme name must be used; foreign language programmes shall indicate the Chinese and foreign language names on a clear location on the audiovisual product and its packaging; published imported audiovisual products must indicate the National Copyright Administration registration document number and the General Administration of Press and Publications import approval number on a clear location on the audiovisual product and its packaging; imported audiovisual products that are published through information networks must indicate the above information on the corresponding webpage.
Article 24: Within the period of authorization of publishing audiovisual products of which import was approved, audiovisual product import business work units may not import finished products of the said audiovisual product.
Article 25: The spoken and written language of published imported audiovisual products shall conform to State-issued spoken and written language standards.
Article 26: Import work units conduct audiovisual product import reporting formalities with Customs holding the General Administration of Press and Publications audiovisual product import approval note.
Article 27: Individuals’ bringing audiovisual products into or outside of the borders, or sending them by mail, shall be limited to personal use and reasonable limits, and is dealt with according to relevant Customs regulations.
Article 28: These rules do not apply to audiovisual products imported together with machine facilities as well as re-exported together with machine facilities after import, recording content such as operating systems, equipment instructions, specialized software, etc., Customs examines contracts, invoices and other effective certification provided by importing work units and allows it to pass.
Chapter V: Punishment provisions
Article 29: Those engaging in finished audiovisual product import business activities without approval or authorization, will be subject to punishment according to the relevant provisions of Article 39 of the “Audiovisual Product Management Regulations”
Article 30: Those conducting one of the following activities, will be subject to order of cessation of the unlawful activity issued a warning, an have their unlawful audiovisual products and unlawful income confiscated by the county-level or higher administrative press and publications department; where the unlawful business income exceeds 10000 Yuan, a fine of five times or more but less than 10 times the unlawful business income is additionally imposed; where the unlawful business income is lower than 10000 Yuan, a fine of less than 50000 Yuan is additionally imposed; where circumstances are grave, business cessation for rectification will be ordered or the original permit-issuing organ cancels permits:
(1) publishing imported audiovisual products not approved by the General Administration of Press and Publications without authorization;
(2) wholesaling, retailing, renting or screening imported audiovisual products not approved by the General Administration of Press and Publications;
(3) wholesaling, retailing, renting or screening audiovisual products imported for research or teaching reference, or for use in exhibitions or shows.
Article 31: Those publishing imported audiovisual products without indicating the content provided in these Rules in violation of these Rules, will be ordered to rectify this by the provincial-level or higher administrative press and publications department, and issued a warning, where circumstances are grave, business cessation for rectification will be ordered or the original permit-issuing organ cancels permits.
Article 32: Those conducting one of the following activities, in violation of these Regulations, will be ordered rectify this by the provincial-level or higher administrative press and publications department, and issued with a warning, a fine of 30000 Yuan or less may additionally be imposed:
(1) publishing imported audiovisual products that use spoken or written language that does not conform to State-published spoken and written language standards;
(2) published imported audiovisual products and changing the programme name or changing programme content without authorization in violation of these Rules;
where changing the content of audiovisual products that are examined and approved for import leads to their containing content prohibited by the provisions of Article 6 of these Rules, punishment will be imposed according to the relevant articles of the “Audiovisual Product Management Regulations”.
Article 33: those violating customs laws and relevant management regulations, will be punished by customs according to the law.
Chapter VI: Supplementary provisions
Article 34: Audiovisual product import from the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the Macau Special Administrative Region and the Taiwan Region, will be carried out with reference to these Rules.
Article 35: Electronic publication import will be carried out with reference to these Rules.
Article 36: The General Administration of Press and Publications has the responsibility for interpreting these Rules. Where they involve customs functions, interpretation is the responsibility of the General Administration of Customs.
Article 37: These Rules take effect on the day of promulgation, the “Audiovisual Product Import Management Rules: promulgated by the Ministry of Culture and the General Administration of Customs on 1 June 2002 are abolished at the same time.