AliExpress fans can say goodbye to cheap shopping on the Chinese e-commerce website. As per an amendment to the Customs Tariff Act, 1975, the Central Board of Excise and Customs has updated the quantum of custom duties payable on the import of personal items, making items purchased abroad dearer by close to 42% (the exact figure is 41.492%).
This includes stuff that you buy on e-commerce websites based outside India, such as the popular aliexpress.com, a go-to destination for many Indian consumers looking for cheap deals on electronic items, home decor items, bulk clothing purchases, jewellery and watches, and accessories like bags and shoes.
Interestingly, books have been added under the ambit of ‘items of personal use’ too. This was not the case earlier, and books were exempt from custom duties. Purchases from other foreign online stores popular with Indians, such as the Amazon US store; thinkgeek.com, which offers gizmos and gadgets not available in India; or fashion brand ASOS, will also be impacted by the current enhanced duty structures and will cost more.
The 41.49% tax is applicable on purchases worth more than Rs 2,000, whereas items that cost below Rs 2000 will be charged customs duty at 14.7%.
The current tariff structure will be as follows:
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