In the Budget 2017-2018 exercise of the 8th June 2017 by The Prime Minister, Pravind Jugnauth ( btw, I hate to say that and I am sure, I’m not the only one), the following section was included in the Annex section :
A.3. Customs duty
(c) Import by Post and Courier Services
Presently, the first Rs 2,000 of the value of an article imported by post and courier services is exempt from customs duty and VAT. Henceforth, this exemption value is raised to Rs 3,000.
So, if you purchase an item valued at, let’s say, Rs 10, 000, you will have to pay VAT (or custom duties, where applicable) on only Rs 7, 000. This amounts to 15% of Rs 7,000 = Rs 1, 050. So, your item has cost you a total of Rs 11,050. Without this exemption increase, your item would have cost you Rs 11, 200. Quite a saving!
As a reminder, there’s also a Rs 30, 000 limit beyond which you need to hire a customs broker to be able to clear your items out of the custom. Prior to Budget 2013, the limit was only Rs 10, 000 and there was no exemption. Read more here.
That’s indeed a good news for those who spend their time and money on online shopping platforms such as eBay, Amazon or Alibaba! This said, I now have to update my old articles!
Is this effective immediately?
Unless specified otherwise, all budgetary measures become effective immediately. Probably same here but sometimes, authorities can take time to apply it as they need to receive formal instructions and in some cases (not for this one), new paperwork and blabla.