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Officials will reportedly delay the lowering of Russia's threshold on duty-free online purchases


In Russia today, you can buy up to 1,000 euros ($1,154) or as much as 31 kilograms (68 pounds) in a month from foreign online stores without paying a special tax of 30 percent (not to exceed four euros per kilogram, or $2.10 per pound).

According to the newspaper Kommersant, officials in the finance and communications ministries are working out reforms that would postpone lowering the duty threshold to 500 euros ($577) a month until January 1, 2019, and lower it further to 100 euros ($115) for each parcel, without any monthly restrictions, starting on July 1, 2019. Kommersant’s source did not reveal what the new tax rates would be. A federal official told the newspaper that these reforms are only one of several options now under discussion.

On June 18, Finance Ministry tax and customs policy head Alexey Sazanov official reportedly said the threshold on duty-free online purchases would fall to 500 euros a month as soon as July 1, 2018, though an unnamed ministry representative later clarified that this is still under debate. According to Vedomosti, Russia’s Federal Customs Service also wants the duty-free threshold lowered, advocating a 20-percent tax on all purchases from foreign online stores.