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    1. importgaming is offline

      Join Date
      Apr 2012
      United Kingdom
      United Kingdom
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      Importing Japanese Video games into the UK - Is this legal

      Hello all,

      I have found a supplier of new release Japanese Video games, I live in the UK and would be selling them online to the UK, Europe and America, is it Legal to do this or not? The goods are 100% genuine.

      I understand it's illegal to sell imported consoles, but I wonder where I stand on Games themselves?

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    2. WholesaleMod's Avatar
      WholesaleMod is offline

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      Dec 2010
      United States
      United States
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      Hi Importgaming,

      Welcome to Wholesale Forum

      Major publishers don't want their titles to be imported from countries where they can be sourced cheaper, however importing genuine games from a legitimate Japanese supplier is not illegal. Major publishers of video games will however put pressure on large importers of video games to deter the practice, this could be one of the reasons why Amazon Japan won't ship video games to the US. Also Japanese video games are made for use on NTSC consoles, whereas the UK and rest of the EU uses the PAL system. If you sell these to EU customers they will need a region free console or else won't be able to play the Japanese games. In the US however they use the NTSC system nationwide, so you can sell Japanese imported games in the US without needing to verify compatibility with your customers.

      Many of the titles which can be imported from Japan will only be available in Japanese, so don't start importing video games with a lot of text in them like adventure based RPG games.

      Most importers of Japanese video games sell their titles above the recommended retail price in Japan in order to cover for shipping costs, import taxes, duties and fees. Hardcore gamers are willing to pay the higher price, but as the US release date for a title gets closer they will be patient and wait for the cheaper US version to be released. You should import new titles long before they are released in the US and make sure that you can sell the quantities you have imported before their US release date. Once the titles you have imported are released in the US, you will be left having to sell your overstock titles at a loss because you won't be able to compete with larger retailers.

      You should carefully investigate which titles will have the highest demand and don't overstock on every title you import.

      Hope this helps
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