Includes information on average tariff rates and types that U.S. firms should be aware of when exporting to the market.
The Lao import tax system aims to promote imports of inputs for investment and production while protecting domestic production and limiting luxury imports. Certain foreign investments are not obliged to pay import duties on imports of capital machinery and equipment for production. Additionally, in some SEZs, inputs do not require duties if the final product is exported from Laos. Raw materials and intermediate goods imported for import substituting industries can be accorded special treatment based on an incentive agreement.
The tariff nomenclature of Lao PDR, which is based on ASEAN Harmonized Tariff Nomenclature (AHTN 2012), observes standard ASEAN import tariff rates varying from zero to 40 percent, excluding non-ASEAN countries. These published rates are levied by the Customs Department.
Excise tax rates range from 5-90 percent on many goods. The Lao government phased out turnover taxes over the last several years and replaced those with a Value Added Tax (VAT) regime, though the VAT remains inconsistently applied. Additional tax information can be found at the Tax Department, Ministry of Finance (http://taxservice.mof.gov.la/websquare/websquare.do).