An ease is coming for non-commercial importers in Antigua and Barbuda.
The customs changes announced by Finance Minister Harold Lovell affect those bringing goods into the country though the airport or via the postal service.
He told Parliament that often, low-priced items incur high freight costs…which is one of the components used to calculate the duty to be paid.
Lovell said the change should take effect in a little over a week from now.
He also disclosed that challenges with administering the baggage policy – a duty free allowance – at the airport have forced government to review the system.
At present residents are allowed to import the equivalent of 700 EC dollars worth of goods duty- free when they return from an overseas trip.
The Finance Minister said this is difficult to police because no database on citizens’ travel details has been built.
On another matter, Lovell said a rise in irregularities has forced government to cut out the practice of importers making direct payments to customs officers who check their shipments.
Finance Minister, Harold Lovell.