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Tax on foreign online purchases reduced, standardized

The ceiling of a customs duty exemption on items and goods bought online from outside the Kingdom and intended for personal use has been doubled and only a fixed 10 percent fee is now imposed, provided that the value of each package does not exceed JD200 (about $282).

According to a decision announced Wednesday by Minister of Finance Mohammad Al-Ississ, the move aims to facilitate e-commerce, support the logistics sector and e-traders and speed up clearance procedures.

The decision, which is in effect now, also cancels a pervious arrangement that sets an annual ceiling for individual purchases from abroad. Additionally, no taxes or fees will be collected on the packages except for the 10-percent fixed rate.

Previously, a JD5 fee was collected on packages the value of which is less than JD50 and a JD10 fee on those less than JD100. According to the previous arrangement, if the package is valued more than JD100, it will be subject to a customs duty appraisal.

Al-Ississ stressed that his ministry is undertaking a comprehensive review of the customs system to achieve the desired goals of facilitating business-doing to serve the national economy.

The Customs Department has introduced a risk assessment methodology, which will reduce the number of parcels that are subject to opening and manual inspection by the department.

This decision applies to all online foreign purchases intended for personal use, excluding tobacco and its products, including cigarettes, cigars, electronic cigarettes, their supplies and components, alcoholic beverages and goods received in commercial quantities.

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