Bahamas Tariffs, Duties, and Import Taxes
In 2003, the imports of goods and services were $1.53 billion; Major import trading partners: US 20.8%, South Korea 17.4%, Italy 11.4%, France 9.1%, Brazil 7.5%.
The Bahamian Government raises over 50% of its revenue from import tariffs or duties. The standard ad valorem tariff for imported goods is 35%, but a many items have their own duty rates. All duty rates are subject to change at a moment’s notice.
Bahamians residents shopping abroad are permitted to import $300 worth of goods, duty free, twice per year.
The Bahamas government also charges a 7% “stamp tax” on most imports.
|fine cut tobacco||210%|
|chewing tobacco||duty free|
|cigarettes||210% and 7% stamp tax|
|room air conditioners||35%|
|automobiles||45 to 75%, based car book value|
|automobile parts and accessories||35 – 50%|
|personal computers||duty free|
|business computers||duty free|
Customs Valuation: Most imported goods are valued based on their actual cost as evidenced by an invoice. The Customs Department only honors discounts of up to three% given by U.S. exporters. Customs officials determine the value of automobiles with reference to standard valuation guides. Freight and shipping charges are included in the value assessed.
Import Licenses: Permits are required for imports of certain items. Applications for permits should be made to the ministry indicated, as follows: Poultry, meats, vegetables, fruits, live plants and animals: Ministry of Agriculture; Medicines: Ministry of Health; Slot machines, trailers and caravans for living (temporary use only): Ministry of Finance; Firearms, fireworks, underwater guns other than Hawaiian slings: Commissioner of Police; and Precursor and essential chemicals: Customs Department.
Import/Export Documentation Requirements: Entry forms are required by Bahamian Customs for goods coming by sea, air or post. A genuine invoice (original or copy) is required. Goods may be cleared through Customs without a proper invoice if the importer leaves a deposit (usually double the estimated duty) and agrees to present an invoice at a later time.