List Of Import Duties By Country, 7 Countries

List Of Import Duties By Country, 7 Countries

7 Countries with the Highest Import Duties in the World

Import duties are taxes that are levied on imported goods, capital and services. They are a form of protectionism that aims to reduce the competitiveness of foreign products and protect domestic industries. Import duties can also be used as a source of revenue for the government or as a tool to influence trade policies.

The level of import duties varies across countries and products. According to the World Trade Organization (WTO), the global average applied tariff rate was 6.8% in 2019, but some countries impose much higher rates on certain goods or categories of goods. In this article, we will look at seven countries that have the highest import duties in the world, based on the latest available data from the WTO and other sources.

1. Palau: 34.6%

Palau is a small island nation in the Pacific Ocean with a population of about 18,000 people. It has the highest import duty rate in the world, according to the WTO, with an average applied tariff of 34.6% in 2018. Palau mainly imports food, machinery, fuel, beverages and tobacco, and its main trading partners are the United States, Japan, China and Australia. Palau’s high import duties are partly due to its lack of domestic production and its reliance on imports for most of its needs.


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2. Solomon Islands: 30.3%

The Solomon Islands is another island nation in the Pacific Ocean with a population of about 680,000 people. It has the second-highest import duty rate in the world, with an average applied tariff of 30.3% in 2018. The Solomon Islands mainly imports machinery, vehicles, fuel, food and chemicals, and its main trading partners are China, Australia, Singapore and Malaysia. The Solomon Islands’ high import duties are partly due to its low level of economic development and its need to raise revenue from trade taxes.

3. Bermuda: 27.6%

Bermuda is a British overseas territory in the Atlantic Ocean with a population of about 64,000 people. It has the third-highest import duty rate in the world, with an average applied tariff of 27.6% in 2018. Bermuda mainly imports machinery, vehicles, food, fuel and chemicals, and its main trading partners are the United States, Canada, China and the United Kingdom. Bermuda’s high import duties are partly due to its lack of income tax and its reliance on customs duties as its main source of government revenue.

4. Saint Kitts and Nevis: 21.1%

Saint Kitts and Nevis is a dual-island nation in the Caribbean Sea with a population of about 53,000 people. It has the fourth-highest import duty rate in the world, with an average applied tariff of 21.1% in 2018. Saint Kitts and Nevis mainly imports machinery, vehicles, food, fuel and beverages, and its main trading partners are the United States, Trinidad and Tobago, China and Singapore. Saint Kitts and Nevis’ high import duties are partly due to its small domestic market and its need to protect its local industries from foreign competition.

5. Gambia: 18.1%

Gambia is a small country in West Africa with a population of about 2.4 million people. It has the fifth-highest import duty rate in the world, with an average applied tariff of 18.1% in 2018. Gambia mainly imports food, machinery, vehicles, fuel and chemicals, and its main trading partners are China, Senegal, India and Brazil. Gambia’s high import duties are partly due to its low level of economic diversification and its dependence on trade taxes for government revenue.

6. Bahamas: 17%

Bahamas is an archipelagic country in the Caribbean Sea with a population of about 390,000 people. It has the sixth-highest import duty rate in the world, with an average applied tariff of 17% in 2018. Bahamas mainly imports machinery, vehicles, food, fuel and beverages and its main trading partners are the United States, China, Brazil and Canada. Bahamas’ high import duties are partly due to its lack of income tax and its reliance on customs duties as its main source of government revenue.

7. Djibouti: 17%

Djibouti is a small country in East Africa with a population of about 1 million people. It has the seventh-highest import duty rate in the world, with an average applied tariff of 17% in 2014. Djibouti mainly imports food, machinery, vehicles, fuel and chemicals, and its main trading partners are China, Ethiopia, India and Saudi Arabia. Djibouti’s high import duties are partly due to its strategic location as a transit hub for regional trade and its need to raise revenue from trade taxes.

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The impact of import duties on global demand

Import duties are taxes that are applied to certain goods when they are imported into a country. The rate of import duties can vary depending on the type of goods being imported and the country of origin. Import duties can affect the global demand for goods and services by influencing the price, quantity, and quality of imports and exports.

How import duties affect price

One of the main effects of import duties is that they increase the price of imported goods in the domestic market. This can make domestic producers more competitive and reduce the demand for imports. However, this can also lead to higher prices for consumers and lower welfare for society as a whole. Import duties can also affect the price of exported goods, as they can trigger retaliatory tariffs from other countries or reduce the competitiveness of domestic exporters in foreign markets.


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How import duties affect quantity

Another effect of import duties is that they reduce the quantity of imported goods in the domestic market. This can create a shortage of supply and increase the demand for domestic substitutes. However, this can also lead to inefficiency and waste, as domestic producers may not be able to meet the demand or produce at the optimal scale. Import duties can also affect the quantity of exported goods, as they can reduce the demand for domestic goods in foreign markets or create trade diversion and trade creation effects.

How import duties affect quality

A third effect of import duties is that they affect the quality of imported goods in the domestic market. This can have positive or negative consequences depending on the nature of the goods and the level of competition. Import duties can encourage domestic producers to improve their quality and innovation, as they face less pressure from foreign competitors. However, import duties can also discourage foreign producers from improving their quality and innovation, as they face higher barriers to entry and lower returns.

List of import duties by country

The following list sorts countries according to their weighted mean applied import duty on all products, based on data from the World Bank . Import duty refers to taxes levied on imported goods, capital and services. The level of customs duties is a direct indicator of the openness of an economy to world trade. However, there may also be import barriers that are not based on the levy of duties.

RankCountryTariff rate (%)Year
1Palau34.632018
2Solomon Islands30.282018
3Bermuda27.592018
4Saint Kitts and Nevis21.062018
5Gambia18.082018
156Singapore0.002018
157Macao SAR, China0.002018
158Hong Kong SAR, China0.002018

The average weighted import duty in these important economic areas in 2018 was the following percentage: People’s Republic of China: 3.39%, Japan: 2.45%, European Union: 1.69% and the United States: 1.59% . The respective import duty does not apply to countries with which free trade agreements have been concluded.

Trends in global demand for imports

The global demand for imports depends on various factors, such as income, preferences, exchange rates, trade policies, and global shocks. According to the World Trade Organization (WTO), world merchandise trade volume fell by 5.3% in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but is expected to rebound by 8% in 2021 . However, this recovery is subject to uncertainty and risks, such as new variants of the virus, vaccine availability and distribution, fiscal and monetary policies, trade tensions, and environmental issues.

The WTO also provides data on merchandise imports by product group and by region . The following table shows the percentage change in value and volume of imports by product group in 2020 compared to 2019.

Product groupValue (%)Volume (%)
Agricultural products-2.2-0.6
Fuels and mining products-31.5-9.6
Manufactures-5.4-4.7

The following table shows the percentage change in value and volume of imports by region in 2020 compared to 2019.

RegionValue (%)Volume (%)
North America-6.1-6.1
South and Central America-13.0-9.7
Europe-11.4-8.6
Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS)-11.5-4.9
Africa-8.5-5.4
Middle East-13.2-7.3
Asia0.30.3

These tables show that the global demand for imports was negatively affected by the pandemic in 2020, especially for fuels and mining products and for regions that rely heavily on these products, such as South and Central America, the Middle East, and Africa. However, Asia was the only region that recorded a positive growth in both value and volume of imports, mainly due to the strong performance of China, which increased its imports by 2.3% in value and 5.6% in volume .

References:

https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/tm.tax.mrch.wm.ar.zs

https://www.llv.li/files/as/liechtenstein_in_figures_2020.pdf

https://oec.world/

https://tcdata360.worldbank.org/countries/KSV?indicator=1541&countries=BRA&viz=line_chart&years=1970,2019&country=KSV

https://www.transport.gov.scot/publication/transporting-scotlands-trade-2019-edition/3-scotlands-trade-13/

https://www.trademap.org/Country_SelProduct.aspx?nvpm=1%7c%7c%7c%7c%7cTOTAL%7c%7c%7c2%7c1%7c1%7c1%7c1%7c1%7c2%7c1%7c1%7c1

https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/TM.TAX.MRCH.WM.AR.ZS
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_tariff_rate

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_tariff_rate

https://usmef.org/export-data/import-duties-by-country



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