The Ministry of Finance is prepared to get rid of nearly all customs charges over the next two years, with food as the sole exception.
Kjarninn reports that the ministry will be making the change in two steps. 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.
The reason behind the decision: market interests, according to a statement from the ministry.
“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.