Customs duty increases have been postponed by the Iraqi Finance Ministry due to the high cost of goods, according to Aknews.
Duty was due to go up from 5% on all goods – a rate said to have been set low to encourage trade with Iraq – to as much as 30%. To put that into context, the US, which has one of the lowest rates in the world, has an average customs duty of 3%.
A parliamentary committee on economy and investment has criticised the decision, saying this will have a negative effect on the Iraqi economy.
The Investment Committee’s Nahida al-Daini told AKnews that the announcement was a surprise and would have undesirable consequences.
“Not applying the customs law means allowing poor quality goods enter the Iraqi market without any controls, as well as damaging the businesses of local producers due to competition from the imported goods,” said Daini.