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Taxes and Applicable to Imported Goods

If you import goods commercially into Timor-Leste, you must pay the duties and taxes that are applicable by law.

There are three types of duty or tax on imports, as follows:

  • Import Duty, which is also commonly known as “customs duty”, is calculated at a rate of 5% of the value of the goods.

  • Sales Tax is charged at a rate of 2.5% of the following amounts:

    (A) the customs value of the goods
    (B) the amount of import duty imposed
    (C) the amount of any excise duty paid

In other words, the base value for Sales Tax = A+B+C

  • Excise Tax is charged at different percentage rates or specific units, depending on the type of goods.
    The base value for excise tax is the cost of the goods.

Excisable Goods

In accordance with the New Excise Tax for 2023 the following goods are subject to payment of excise tax:

Tarif #General Description of GoodsApplicable Tax (USD)
1701-1704Sugars and confectionery$1.00 per Kilogram
2202Waters, including mineral waters and aerated waters, containing added sugar or other sweetening matter or flavored and other non-alcoholic beverages, other than fruit or vegetable juices, falling under heading 20.09$3.00 per Liter
2203.00.10Beer with alcohol content less than 4.5%$2.70 per Liter
2203.00.20Beer with alcohol content of 4.5% or more$4.50 per Liter
2204-2206Wine, Vermouth and other fermented beverages (e.g. cider, perry)$4.50 per Liter
2207,2208Ethyl alcohol (other than denatured) and other alcohol beverages$8.90 per Liter
2401-2403Tobacco and Tobacco Products$100.00 per Kilogram
2710Gasoline, diesel fuel products, and other petroleum products$0.06 per Liter
8703Passenger cars whose value is less then $10,000.000%
   a. Of a Value that Exceeds $10,000.0010% of the excise value
   b. Of a Value that Exceeds$25,000.0020% of the excise value
   c. Of a Value that Exceeds $50,000.0030% of the excise value
9301-9307Arms and ammunition200% of the excise value
9303.90.00Captive bolt guns for slaughtering animals10% of the excise value
9613Cigarette lighters12% of the excise value
9614Smoking pipes12% of the excise value
9706Private boats and aircraft20% of the excise value

Goods Exempt from Import Duty

Certain goods are exempt from duties and taxes if they meet certain conditions, including:

a) Goods accompanying a traveler arriving in Timor-Leste from another country
You can learn more about these types of goods here.

b) Imported goods that fall under the following types:

  • Exempted under the Vienna Conventions on Diplomatic Relations of 1961 and Consular Relations of 1963;
  • Exempted under the Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the United Nations;
  • Exempted under the Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the Specialized Agencies;
  • Goods re-imported in the same condition in which they were exported;
  • Goods imported by registered charitable organizations in Timor-Leste, except alcohol or tobacco, if the goods are to be used for charitable purposes of humanitarian assistance and relief, education or health care;
  • Goods for temporary admission, like large machinery to complete a project. The importer will be required to provide a financial guarantee;
  • Goods for consumption by international staff of UNMIT or members of the Peace Keeping Force from contingent countries, if the goods are sold in conformity with prescribed rules of sale;
  • Baby formulas that are specially designed for babies less than one (1) year of age so that after preparation they are consumed in a liquid form and provide the health benefits of human milk that would normally be provided to a baby that suckles from its mother; and
  • Tampons and sanitary napkins

c) Goods not described in (a) and (b) above, if:

The goods are imported into Timor-Leste other than as personal goods accompanying a traveler, and the import duty that would be imposed on the import if not for this paragraph would be $10 or less.

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