Questions? Contact Us Now +1 (303) 772-6100

Automation &
Monitoring Solutions.

Analysis of the Costs for International Duties and Taxes

First off I wanted to introduce myself. I am the Sales Professional at Aim Dynamics. I have been working in this position for the past year and as part of my responsibilities I give quotes to customers and oversee to the shipment of our products and as such I regularly see the costs of Duties and Taxes associated with international orders. I always thought it curious that some countries could have such high Duties and Taxes while others so small and I’m confident that it would be fascinating to others as well so that is why I wanted to share some interesting but basic information I’ve found.


Now I’m not going to be giving explanations or reasons for differences in Duties and Taxes, just observations. This is because I feel that there are just too many factors to consider, individual countries laws, international laws, currency exchange rates. Regardless, even if I did write down concerning every factor this article would grow to an enormous size and that is not what I want. I want this article to be simple and easy to read.


I want to give you a list of many different countries along with the cost of Duties and Taxes to ship to those countries. But first I need to list out a couple of things to consider.

  • I used the FedEx Global Trade Manager to get the estimates of Duties and Taxes.
  • The cost of Duties and Taxes is constantly fluctuating and so this data may become obsolete.
  • Currency used is the United States Dollar (USD).
  • The mock shipment I created is a typical shipment Aim Dynamics would ship to a customer, using our products which are Current Transformers for electrical monitoring and metering.
  • The weight of the mock shipment was 10 pounds with 15 units.
  • The Harmonized code used for the mock shipment is: 8504314035
  • The shipping origin used was Denver, Colorado.


*Duties and Taxes Table*

 $500 Customs Value$1000 Customs Value
Costa Rica$70$140
Hong Kong$0$0
New Zealand$104$243
Puerto Rico$0$0
South Africa$127$254
South Korea$94$188
United Arab Emirates$25$50


One observation to make is that the majority of countries have a simple pattern that is easy to follow. Once I doubled the amount of the Customs Value, the Duties and Taxes doubled as well. However there are a few that do not follow that trend. Note that Brazil and Switzerland are countries where the cost is not doubled after the Customs Value increases but is actually less than double the amount you’d expect. Whereas Argentina and New Zealand, their Duties and Taxes are more than doubled, in fact, Argentina’s Duties and Taxes almost quadruples.


Australia on the other hand is a unique case. I found that all shipping to Australia with $800 or less in the Customs Value had no cost in regard to Duties or Taxes. But once the Customs Value of the shipment went over $800 then the costs for Duties and Taxes begin.


My hope as the author of this article is that you, the reader, will look at this data and make your own observations. The things that I highlighted will be broad, general, or relevant to me and my company. By making your own observations you will be tying the data in this article to your own situation in the business world. By making your own observations you’ll be making this information relevant to you and thus making this article more than just interesting or intriguing. It’ll make this information useful and valuable.