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Import taxes explained in a nutshell

In general, import duty is a tax that the importer has to pay to bring foreign goods into his or her country. Import VAT (Value Added Tax) is a tax charged on imported goods and services.

Duty and VAT are calculated as a percentage of the value of the imported goods, consisting of the product value and the freight & insurance costs.

For importing into the UK, duty and VAT are normally due when a minimum value threshold of £15 is reached. Duty is not paid on consignments shipped within the EU.

Import duty rates vary depending on the type of goods; many goods are duty free. Relief from duty and VAT may apply in special cases. Also, in some cases additional duties may be charged, depending of the country of manufacture of the goods