Taiwan country guide

Learn about cross-border ecommerce, shipping, and importing.

If you are looking to grow your ecommerce business into Taiwan 🇹🇼 Attribution for Twitter Emojis: ©️ Twitter, Inc., you’ve come to the right place. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about selling goods into Taiwan.

Ease of importing goods score: A 

Ease of doing business 5/5

  • Taiwan has many trade agreements, is part of the WTO, and does not have many significant trade barriers or extensive import documentation requirements, making it fairly easy to business there.

Landed cost fairness 4/5

  • Though Taiwan’s de minimis is fairly low, which is unfavorable for landed cost, the VAT and average duty rates are low, which balances out the low de minimis for an overall fair landed cost.

Flexibility of legal regulations 3/5

  • While there are not many significant stringent legal regulations for importing into Taiwan, there are strict laws governing the importation of food and agricultural products.

Availability and accessibility of shipping 5/5

  • All the major carriers offer services to Taiwan, making it an accessible ship-to location.

Accessibility and variety of payment methods 5/5

  • Taiwan uses global payment methods, which are convenient for those wishing to sell to Taiwan-based consumers or businesses.

Market opportunity 5/5

  • Almost all of Taiwan’s population use the internet and a high percentage shop online, making it a good market opportunity.

Key stats for Taiwan 

Population23.3 million (2022)
GDP828.66 billion USD (2022)
GDP per capita35,513 USD (2022)
Internet penetration91% of the population use the internet (2022)
Ecommerce users80.9% of the population shop online (2022)
Leading product categoriesDigital media and entertainment, apparel and footwear, and consumer electronics
Preferred online payment method(s)Credit and debit cards and digital wallets
LanguagesMandarin Chinese and Taiwanese Mandarin (Hokkien)
CurrencyNew Taiwan dollar/TWD/$/NT$

Landed cost for Taiwan 

Landed cost is the total price of getting a purchase to the customer's door, which includes:

  • Product price
  • Shipping
  • Duties
  • Taxes
  • Fees (currency conversion, carrier, broker, customs, or government fees)

Taiwanese de minimis, tax, and duty

Term to know

CIF: CIF (cost, insurance, freight) is a method for calculating import taxes or duties where the tax is calculated on the cost of the order plus the cost of freight and insurance.

Further explanation of de minimis, tax, and duty provided below

Duty and tax de minimis

  • Duty and tax de minimis: 2,000 TWD

Based on the CIF value of the order

De minimis value

Duty and tax will be charged only on imports into Taiwan where the total CIF value of the import exceeds Taiwan’s minimum value threshold (de minimis), which is 2,000 TWD. Anything under the tax de minimis value is considered a tax-free import, and anything under the duty de minimis value is considered a duty-free import.

Import tax

  • Standard rate: 5%

Applied to the CIF value of the order

Value-added tax (VAT)

The import VAT rate for Taiwan is 5% and is applied to the CIF value of the order. There are no VAT registration requirements for selling physical goods into Taiwan if you do not have a physical location there.

When you need to register:

  • If you sell digital services into Taiwan where the total value exceeds $480,000 TWD, you must register for Taiwanese VAT.
  • If you have a physical business location or warehouse in Taiwan and the total value of the imported goods exceeds $80,000 TWD annually, you must register for Taiwanese VAT.

Trade promotion service tax

Every import into Taiwan is subject to a trade promotion service fee of .04%, which is applied to the CIF value of the order.

Import duty

  • Average rate: 6.25%

Applied to the CIF value of the order

Duty rate

Taiwan’s duty rates range from 0-30%, with an average rate of 6.25%. Duty is applied to the CIF value of the import.

Landed cost examples

Below are sample landed cost breakdowns for Taiwan (one below the de minimis threshold and one above), which were calculated using Zonos Quoter:

Landed cost for a shipment to Taiwan below the de minimis value:

Taiwan landed cost quote below de

Landed cost for a shipment to Taiwan above the de minimis value:

Taiwan landed cost quote above de

Taiwan landed cost quote above de minimis

Trade agreements

Taiwan has at least 11 trade agreements that offer a zero or highly discounted duty rate for goods manufactured in participating countries.

Taiwan is a member of the World Trade Organization

As a member of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Taiwan must abide by the most-favored-nation (MFN) clause, which requires a country to provide any concessions, privileges, or immunities granted to one nation in a trade agreement to all other WTO member countries. For example, if one country reduces duties by 10% for a particular WTO country, the MFN clause states that all WTO members will receive the same 10% reduction.

Customs resources 

Taiwan’s Customs authority

Taipei Customs Administration

Customs refund in Taiwan

Customs refund in Taiwan

Note: Talk to your carrier about customs refunds.

Shipping and compliance 

Top courier services:

  • DHL Express
  • EMS
  • FedEx
  • UPS
  • USPS

Depending on the courier, additional shipping fees may include:

  • Tracking
  • Insurance
  • Fuel surcharge
  • Remote delivery charge
  • Signature fee
  • Overweight or oversized fee
  • Special handling fee
  • Dangerous goods fee
  • etc.

Documentation and paperwork

Always required:

Sometimes required:

  • Certificate of origin

    • Required for certain goods, such as small passenger cars, vehicle frames, tobacco, chassis, alcohol products, and some agricultural products.
    • May be required for preferential tariff treatment.

Prohibited, restricted, and controlled imports into Taiwan

Government agencies regulate imports.

Prohibited vs. restricted. vs. controlled items

Restricted items are different from prohibited items. Prohibited items are not allowed to be imported into a country at all. Restricted items are not allowed to be imported into a country unless the importer has approval or a special license. Controlled goods have military or national security significance.

Prohibited items:

  • Drugs not for medical use
  • Firearms, ammunition, and knives
  • Goods infringing upon the rights of patents, trademarks, and copyrights
  • Fake or altered currencies/securities, or molds for printing counterfeit currency
  • Live wildlife or protected wildlife products
  • Goods prohibited by law from importation

Restricted items:

  • Animals
  • Dried food over six kilograms or not for personal use
  • Endangered species of wildlife
  • Medical equipment
  • Medicine and controlled drugs
  • Plants or seeds
  • Radio transmitters and telecommunication equipment
  • Raw food
  • Tobacco and alcohol

Further information on Taiwan’s prohibited and restricted imports:

Legal regulations for businesses

Requirements to import food and agricultural products into Taiwan

Taiwan doesn’t have many notable legal regulations, but a significant import category that importers should pay special attention to is food and agricultural products. There are special labeling, packaging, and registration requirements involved with importing these goods. See the full report of Taiwan’s customs regulations for food and agricultural products here.

Tips for exporting from Taiwan 

Taiwan’s exportation regulations

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