Unpacking the Price: The Impact of Import Duties and Taxes on iPhone 15 Prices Globally
Global Launch of iPhone 15 Series
On September 22, 2023, Apple launched the much-anticipated iPhone 15 series, making the innovative smartphone available in several countries. As is tradition, the official prices of the iPhone 15 series were posted on Apple’s website. However, the final cost for consumers varies significantly due to import duties and taxes applied by different countries. This article explores the impact of these import duties and taxes on the final cost of the iPhone 15 series in three countries: Indonesia, India, and Kenya.
Indonesia: Import Duties, Taxes, and IMEI Registration
For Indonesian consumers, purchasing an iPhone 15 abroad comes with additional responsibilities. All mobile phones bought abroad must have their International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) registered. Failure to register the IMEI of an iPhone 15 purchased abroad can lead to the phone being disconnected from the cellular network within weeks.
The import duty for an iPhone bought from Singapore includes a 10% import duty, an 11% Value Added Tax (VAT), and an Income Tax (PPh) of 10%-20%. Therefore, an Indonesian citizen purchasing an iPhone 15 128GB model in Singapore for an estimated price of US$ 799 would have to pay a tax and import duty amounting to IDR 1.486 million for those with a Taxpayer Identification Number (NPWP) and IDR 1.979 million for those without. Thus, consumers must consider these additional costs when purchasing the iPhone 15 series from abroad.
India: The Cost of Import Duties and Taxes
For Indian consumers, the cost of the iPhone 15 series is significantly impacted by the duties and taxes levied on iPhones in the country. The iPhone 15 Pro 128GB variant is priced starting at Rs 1,34,900, but the same model unlocked would sell for $999 plus taxes in the US market, approximately Rs 90,000. This price difference is largely due to the 18% Goods and Services Tax (GST) levied across India, which is included in the maximum retail price. The GST alone amounts to Rs 20,577.97 on an iPhone priced at Rs 1,34,900.
Furthermore, import duties for the iPhone 15 Pro models that are imported into the country are considerably higher, with a 20% customs duty and 2% cess. This means a fully built smartphone unit imported into India draws 22% duties. Therefore, for an iPhone 15 Pro priced at Rs 1,34,900, consumers are paying approximately Rs 41,193.42 in taxes and duties. For the entry-level variant of the iPhone 15 Pro Max 256GB, retailing for Rs 1,59,900, the duties and taxes amount to Rs 48,827.48.
Kenya: The Cost of Luxury
In Kenya, the cost of owning the latest iPhone 15 Pro Max is a staggering 250,000 Kenya Shillings, owing to import taxes, VAT, excise duty, and other additional fees. However, a savvy consumer could opt for a clever alternative. By booking a round trip ticket to Dubai, enjoying a luxurious 4-day vacation, and purchasing the iPhone there for just 130,000 shillings, consumers can save a considerable sum, even factoring in the cost of travel and accommodation.
The launch of the iPhone 15 series has illuminated the significant role that import duties and taxes play in the final retail price of global products. With notable price differences seen across Indonesia, India, and Kenya, it is clear that these additional costs can greatly impact the affordability of imported goods. As such, consumers must remain cognizant of these factors when purchasing internationally released products like the iPhone 15 series.
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