How Much Customs Duty You Have to Pay for Importing Goods into India

Written by Amit Agarwal on Sep 29, 2015

You have to pay taxes, also known as customs duty, for importing mobile phones, electronics and other goods from a foreign country into India. These import taxes are payable at the port of entry (like the airport), the courier companies would often pay these on your behalf and will release the goods to you upon the full repayment of these additional duties and taxes.

How much customs duty should you expect to pay for importing, say, a mobile phone from US to India? A package forwarding service service in India shared the latest duty tariff chart and it should give you a good idea of what kind of taxes you can expect to pay for importing the various categories of items into India.

Here’s the chart updated after the 2015 Union Budget:

Category / Product to ImportTotal Duty Rate
Laptops, Notebooks, Computers14.712%
Tablets, iPad28.852%
Laptop Battery23.852%
iPod, Music Players28.852%
Software CDs and DVDs10.300%
Computer Printers14.712%
Electronics28.852%
Hard Disk (internal)6.300%
Hard Disk (external)14.712%
Web Cameras28.852%
Computer Processor6.300%
Internet Modem14.712%
Other Computer Peripherals14.712%
Cables and Wires23.852%
Television Sets (TV)28.852%
Movie CDs, DVDs and Blue Ray28.852%
Video Games and Game Consoles28.852%
Mobile Phones~18%
Phone Accessories28.852%
Digital Cameras and Video Camcorder28.852%
Camera Lens (Photography)28.852%
Sports Equipment14.712%
Books (Educational)Free (No duty)
Car Parts28.852%
Toys and Games28.852%
Stationery Items28.852%
Cosmetic Goods28.852%
Hand Watches (Wrist Watches)28.852%
Sun Glasses28.852%
Apparel (Clothes)28.852%
Fashion Accessories28.852%
Artificial Jewellery28.852%
Shoes (Retail Price < 1k INR)21.782%
Shoes (Retail Price > 1k INR)28.852%
Kitchen and Dining28.852%
Food Supplements, Body Building28.852%
Medicine28.852%

How is Customs Duty Calculated?

It is important to note that the calculation of import duty is done based on the assessed value of an imported product and not the invoice value. Let me explain.

Also see: Online Stores that offer International Shipping

Say you have purchased a mobile phone from Amazon or eBay and have asked the seller to ship it to India. The value (price) of the mobile phone listed on the invoice is $500. The customs officer in India may however assess the product’s value as, say, $600 and in that case, you will have to pay the 18% customs duty on $600 (the assessed value) and not $500 (the invoice value).

And other than customs duty, you’ll have to pay shipping charges, broker fees, countervailing duty, handling charges, CESS and service tax for getting an item into India. If you would like to know the exact cost (shipping + duties) before buying an item, you can use the Amazon Global service where they calculate the import fees at checkout and provide customs clearance on your behalf.

There are no taxes on importing books  and you may import goods up to the value of INR 10,000 duty free provided they are sent as gifts to you.

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