New tariffs on imported products. 20 categories to become subject to a ten percent fee - Lebanon

New tariffs on
imported products
20 categories to become

subject to a ten percent fee

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The Cabinet has decided to impose a ten percent tariff on 20 imported products that are considered as dumped products and which are entering the country in large amounts at prices lower than the local production cost.

These products include flour, dairy products, detergents, furniture, leather shoes, bulgur (berghol), electrical machinery, aluminum profiles, clothes, wafers and biscuits, carrosserie, metal pipes, confectionary and gums, marble and granite tiles, among others.

The decision will be effective after publication in the Official Gazette.

The Cabinet also approved the imposition of a two percent tax on imported products excluding pharmaceuticals, electrical cars, and raw materials for industrial and agricultural products. “The two percent tax will require a law from the Parliament after the approval of the budget,” said Mansour Bteish, Minister of Economy and Trade.

The ten percent tax is effective for five years, and the two percent import tax till 2022.

“The taxes and fees imposed on the imported products will leave positive impacts on the industrial sector,” said Fadi Gemayel, Chairman of the Association of Industrialists.

Total imports accounted for $20 billion last year. Manufactured products are facing fierce competition from products imported from China and Turkey. Imports from China accounted for $2 billion last year, while exports to China do not exceed $20 million. Imports from Turkey represent around $800 million while exports stand at $120 million.

“The decision is a step forward to reduce the deficit in the trade balance,” said Wael Abou Faour, Minister of Industry. “Several factories have shut down in the previous years due to dumping, and this decision will motivate industrialists to invest and resume their operations.”

According to Abou Faour, a special committee including the Ministries of Economy and Trade, Industry, Agriculture, and Customs have studied 24 files regarding dumping.
Reported by Rania Ghanem
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Date Posted: May 23, 2019