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Import Guides

Australia Import Guide

A complete guide for importing goods into Australia.

The Commonwealth of Australia is the largest economy in Oceania, the 13th largest economy in the world (by GDP) and has the 10th highest income per capita. It boasts a population of 26 million people, with an Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) comparative price level of 126, meaning Australians pay an average of 26% more (domestically) than Americans pay for the same product – making Australia an excellent cross-border ecommerce destination.

Key Info

Country code (ISO 3166-1 alpha-2): AU
Country code top-level domain (ccTLD): .au
Currency (ISO4217): Australian Dollar (AUD)
World Trade Organization (WTO) Status: Member

Duty & Tax Information

The ad valorem Most Favored Nation (MFN) duty rates range from 0% to 5% with the average duty rate being 0.03% across the entire tariff and 4.99% across goods with an ad valorem rate of more than 0%. The majority of goods from WTO member countries going to Australia are duty free and duty is calculated using the Free On Board (FOB) valuation method.

Goods and Services Tax (GST) is applied at a rate of 10% on most services, goods and items. Some goods are exempt from GST, including but not limited to:

  • Certain food & beverages
  • Money
  • Certain medical aids
  • Personal effects

An extensive list of GST exemptions can be found here.

GST is calculated on the Value of the Taxable Importation (VoTI), which is a sum of the cost of the goods, transportation and any duty and wine equalization tax payable and is generally charged at the border (at the same time duty and other taxes are collected).

An Import Processing Charge (IPC) is collected on imports over the de minimis value of $1,000 AUD. The rate of the IPC depends on the mode of transport and value of the import:

  • For sea consignments (electronically lodged) $99 AUD for imports valued up to $10,000 AUD and $201 AUD for imports valued above $10,000 AUD.
  • For postal and air consignments (electronically lodged) $88 AUD for imports valued up to $10,000 AUD and $190 AUD for imports valued above $10,000 AUD.

Australia also has a Wine Equalization Tax (WET) of 29% that is applied to some alcoholic imports, and a Luxury Car Tax (LCT) of 33%, which is applied on certain vehicles.

Minimum Thresholds

Australia has a de minimis of $1,000 AUD, below which no duty is payable (with the exception of alcohol and tobacco products). GST also has a de minimis of $1,000 AUD, but if your business sells over $75,000 AUD into Australia per year, you are required to collect and remit GST below that threshold at the time of checkout, not at the border.

Prohibited Goods

The Australian Border Force (ABF) is one of the most robust customs agencies in the world, known for their vigilant enforcement of an extensive list of restricted and prohibited goods and well high levels of operational standards.

There are a number of goods for which import to Australia is prohibited. Some of these goods include:

  • Firearms, firearm parts, firearm accessories and ammunition
  • Explosives
  • Fish
  • Asbestos
  • Lighters
  • Laser pointers

An extensive list of prohibited goods can be found here.

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