Let us face it; no one can build a well cut muscular body within a short time by just eating our regular daily foods. You have got to take some of the supplements to boost the muscle growth in your body. Please note that I am not referring to any steroids here, but basic supplements like Protein powder, Creatine, and fat burners etc. There is a huge market for these supplements in India however there are no major or trustworthy manufacturers which becomes the biggest challenge for any regular Gym goer. You can never rely on the quality of the product manufactured onshore when it comes to health supplements which leaves you with no other option but to buy it online and have it shipped in the country.
The next question that comes to mind however is how much is the import duty on health supplements in India? How many taxes will you have to pay to buy a health supplement online and having it shipped to your doorstep? The first thing that you need to know is that the valuation method of importing goods in India is CIF (Cost, Insurance and Freight), which means the import duties and taxes payable will be calculated on the complete shipping value, inclusive of the price of the imported item, shipping cost and insurance charges if any, and not on just the price of the product. There is however no sales tax charged on items imported and there is also no minimum threshold which means that all imports regardless of their value are subject to duties and taxes. Import duty can be in the form of percentage or specific; rates vary from 0% to 150% with an average duty of 11.9%. Apart from the import duties, you are also required to pay certain other taxes and charges such as landing charges, CVD (countervailing duty), CESS and education CESS. A breakup of these charges is as mentioned below.
Another thing to keep in mind is that your shipping provider may add an additional handling fee to the total cost. Also, the import duty may also depend on price assessment of the product by customs. For example, if you bought a product for $100 online but the customs officer assessed the value at $120, then your import duties will be calculated for $120 and not on the price that you paid.
Now the big question, how much is the import duty on health supplements in India? How to calculate the total cost that you will end up paying including import duties and taxes while buying a supplement online? I will explain this with the help of an example.
Supplements have an average duty of 30% in India. I used the word average because it can vary depending on what kind of supplement you are buying and in what form, for example if it is protein you are buying or a fat burner or if the supplement is in the form of a powder or liquid or a capsule but overall it is around 30% at an average. Landing rate is 1%, CVD is 12%, CESS rate is 3% and additional CVD is 4%. There is no CEX or education CESS charged on food supplements.
So let us assume that you bought a supplement for $25 from USA, shipping cost was $10 and you also paid $5 as insurance charge. Taking the dollar value at INR 63.5 (today’s rate), below is a break up of how much you will end up paying.
- Total Invoice Value (including product price + shipping + insurance): Rs. 2,548.20
- Landing Charges: Rs. 25.48 (1%)
- Import Duty: Rs. 772.10 (30% of (product value + landing charges))
- CVD: Rs. 418.22 (12.5 % of (product value + landing charges + Import duty))
- CESS: Rs. 35.71 (3% of (product value + other charges mentioned above))
- Additional CVD: Rs. 151.99 (4% of (product value + all other charges mentioned above))
- Total Product Cost: Rs. 3951.70 after paying all the import duties and taxes
- Total paid in import duties and taxes: Rs. 1403.50
Click on the links below to read my reviews on some of they whey proteins I have used.
I hope this information was helpful. There could be and I am sure is more to the way taxes and import duties are calculated but this is the basic information. Feel free to comment if you have any questions.