Published July 13, 2015
The Iceland Chamber of Commerce wants to see customs charges lifted off of imported food, which they say will save households about 76,000 ISK per year.
In an announcement posted on their site, the Chamber of Commerce argues that doing away with tolls on imported food with give Icelanders a greater variety of food at less cost to them, while making the domestic market more competitive. They estimate that eliminating these tolls would save Icelandic households about 76,000 ISK per year.
As reported, the Ministry of Finance has already proposed sweeping changes to the customs system. Customs charges on clothing and shoes will be eliminated by January 1, 2016, with all other customs charges gone by January 1, 2017. The only remaining item that will face customs charges is food.
“Tolls have a hampering effect on business, and reduce international trade as a whole,” the statement reads. “When toll charges are put on imported goods, the prices for them goes up, which domestic consumers must pay, which reduces its demand. Eliminating toll charges lowers the price to consumers, increases seller competitiveness, and increases effectiveness within the domestic market.”
According to research done by a workgroup under the ministry, about 5.7 billion ISK went into the treasury from toll charges alone in 2014.