Just when we all think that e-commerce in Indonesia is getting better and easier as time goes by, we get news that the government want to make yet another change. Last year, the government reduced the duties and tax limit down to USD 75 per person per day from USD 100. Now, they want to bring that down to zero.

The Indonesian Ministry of Customs and Excise is looking to change the way e-commerce cross-border to be done, following in similar footsteps as some other countries like Australia. Director General of Customs and Excise, Heru Pambudi, wants to abolish the existence of a duty-free amount for online cross-border sales. Rallying for support, Heru Pambudi wants the support of the people to implement a new mechanism to the sales of e-commerce from overseas within a short period of time; it is unclear when this will be in effect.

The new way of duties and taxes are incurred in the same way you’d pay a restaurant bill or like Australia, duties and taxes are prepaid upon checking out on an online store rather than at the point of import. This allows for the government to get the duties and taxes in a cleaner and more efficient manner, and also at the same time allow for a smoother operation to happen at the airports during importation.

However, until the time comes, we won’t know how the change is, and we’ll just have to wait and see.