China cuts taxes on range of imports

Gucci shop in China

The government wants more people to buy imported goods from shops in China

China will cut import taxes on consumer goods by more than 50% on average in a bid to boost consumer spending.

High tariffs for imported goods have prompted some Chinese consumers to shop abroad or through agents.

By lowering the fees, China may hope to bring some of that consumer spending home.

The government is particularly keen to promote domestic demand as the country is growing at its slowest rate since 2009.

The tariff reduction is an “important measure to create stable growth and push forward structural reform”, said the Ministry of Finance.

From 1 June tariffs for Western-style clothing will be reduced to 7-10% from 14-23%.

Taxes on ankle-high boots and sports shoes will be halved to 12%. Import tariffs on skincare products will fall from 5% to 2%.

However, its not just import taxes that drive up the prices of imported consumer goods in China. VAT and other taxes also play a part.

Analysts say consumers in China pay around 20% more for luxury goods than those in Europe.

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