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China to reduce import tariffs on selected consumer goods by over half

2018-05-31 3 minute read China

Busy shopping mall in China (ACOLINK.COM)

China to significantly reduce import duties on consumer goods effective from July 1st, as it is implementing a series of policy reforms.

2018 marks the 40th year of China’s ’Opening up and Reform’ policy that’s placing the country firmly on the global stage.

To both celebrate and continue that process, the Chinese government is implementing a series of policy reforms to benefit foreign enterprises with eyes on China’s commercial market. On 30 May, 2018, the State Council of China, led by Premier Li Keqiang, announced a significant reduction of import tariffs on daily consumer goods.

Encouraging foreign companies to get involved in China’s domestic market is yet another way of further opening-up China to the global playing field. It comes with the great addition of balancing the reduction of operational costs for foreign business exporting to China, and simultaneously managing the costs consumers have to pay for foreign goods – allowing them to buy more.

Consumer spending structure continued to improve, and there was a growing appetite for quality, customized products.

China’s middle class is a hugely growing proportion of its population with more and more money to spend and a per capita disposable income rise to 7.3% in 2017. As China’s Ministry of Commerce notes, “Consumer spending structure continued to improve, and there was a growing appetite for quality, customized products.”

This is yet another reform after the reduction of import tariffs and duties of nearly 200 consumer goods in late 2017, and the reduction of pharmaceutical import tariffs to 0% earlier this year. It’s a highly optimistic development, and the rebound effect this will have on China’s stake in international trade can’t be ignored.

The Tariff Breakdown

List of products that will see their import tariffs reduced from July 1st:

  • Clothes, shoes, hats, kitchenware, sports & fitness products — from 15.9% to 7.1%
  • Household appliances such as washing machines and refrigerators — from 20.5% to 8.0%
  • Processed foods, farmed products, fishery products for aquatic products, and mineral water — from 15.2% to 6.9%
  • Detergents, skin care, hairdressing and other cosmetics and some medical health products — from 8.4% to 2.9%