Turkey has removed its low value consignment relief effective as of 1st June 2019.
The regime applied to imported packages of goods entering Turkey which had a value of no more than EUR 22. It provided that these supplies were exempt from both import VAT and any related customs charges.
However, the new rules effectively level the playing field between domestic and foreign online sellers: this relief is now abolished and generally all goods that are imported into Turkey will be subject to Turkish VAT and duties, where applicable. The only exception to this is that the relief still exists for books and similar publications with a price of no more than EUR 150.
The rapid increase in cross-border ecommerce trade meant the relief both facilitated fraud via intentional under-reporting of the imported good’s value and allowed ever-greater levels of tax revenue to land clear of the local territory. This policy change pre-empts the EU bloc’s plan to withdraw its low value consignment relief in 2021 and follows the path forged by Australia and Switzerland.
If you believe these developments impact your business and would like further advice on your next steps, please do get in touch.