China Customs granting 1,020 commodities lower tax rate

The Customs Tariff Commission has issued a tariff adjustment notice for 2023, granting an import tax rate lower than the most-favored-nation tax rate for 1,020 commodities starting from January 1, 2023, reflecting China's continued opening-up efforts. In order to safeguard public health and ease the economic burden on patients, import tariffs on raw materials for specific anti-cancer medicines, anti-Covid medicines and painkillers will be lifted, and import tariffs on some medical equipment including dentures and material for intravascular stents will be reduced, according to the notice. In addition, import tariffs on some consumer products such as infant foods, frozen cod, cashew nuts and home appliances, including coffee machines, juicers and hair dryers, will be reduced in response to domestic demand, the Commission said.

The move to adjust import and export tariffs demonstrated China's determination to maintain opening-up and the globalization of its economy, Bai Ming, Deputy Director of the International Market Research Institute at the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation, told the Global Times. China's average tariff level has been reduced in line with its commitments under the WTO, said Bai. “China's tariff adjustments, based on demand in different development phases, showed the nation's free trade principles and the confidence of the domestic industry,” he noted.

The Commission also vowed to lift import tariffs for potash fertilizer and unwrought cobalt, and lower import tariffs for logs, paper products and boric acid to secure industrial supply. Tariff reductions for machinery items such as lithium niobate, e-ink screens and roller bearings for wind turbines will also be implemented.

From July 1, 2023, the import tariff under most-favored-nation treatment of 62 categories of products in the information technology field will be further reduced, taking China's average tariff level from 7.4% down to 7.3%, the Global Times reports.