If your business imports goods and services, it’s important to be aware of your goods and services tax (GST) obligations.
GST applies to most goods imported over $1,000. The amount of GST is 10% of the value of the taxable importation and is generally required to be paid to the Department of Home Affairs before the goods are released.
If you are registered in the deferred GST scheme, payment is automatically deferred until the first activity statement you lodge after the goods are imported.
GST also applies to consumer purchases of digital products or services like movie subscriptions and low value imported goods under $1,000 from offshore.
Not all purchases from overseas include GST, for example:
- some overseas merchants may not be required to register for GST because they don’t reach the A$75,000 GST registration threshold (in sales to Australia)
- some goods may also be GST-free items, such as some food or medical supplies.
Australian GST-registered businesses making purchases of low value imported goods or digital products or services for business purposes should not be charged GST if you provide your supplier your ABN and a statement that you are registered for GST.
You may be able to claim a GST credit for any GST paid if you’re a GST-registered business and the goods you import are part of your business activities.
After 27 March 2020, you will need to use myGovID to access the Business Portal to prepare, lodge and revise your activity statements.
Note: If you are registered for GST as part of the simplified GST system and have an AUSid there are no changes to the way you access the Business Portal.
Lodging your activity statement electronically is a requirement for the deferred GST scheme.