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Australian Customs Service (ACS) -

The Australian Customs Service (Customs) is responsible for the control of importations into Australia and the collection of taxes on imported goods. Goods imported into Australia may be subject to numerous taxes, including GST, excise and customs duty.

For more information on importing, you may contact Customs on 1300 363 263 or visit their web site at Australian Customs

GST Refunds for Tourists
As part of the New Tax System the Government has introduced a Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS). The scheme is administered by Customs. Generally speaking, the scheme means tourists and Australian overseas travellers may be entitled to a refund of goods and services tax (GST) and wine equalisation tax (WET) on purchases of goods bought from Australian retailers. Numerous conditions apply (go to links below).

Travellers can claim the refund direct from customs officers at Tourist Refund Scheme booths located at international airports or cruise terminals when departing Australia.

Specific information is available for:


         Tourism Industry

         Travelling Overseas

For TRS Frequently Asked Questions, please go to TRS and click on Tourist Refund Scheme.

Deferral of GST on Imported Goods
The GST laws provide that a person making a taxable importation must pay the GST to Customs at the same time that they pay Customs duty. There is, however, provision for deferral of the GST. The deferral scheme only covers GST and does not impact upon Customs duty, which must still be paid at the time of importation.

The Assistant Treasurer announced details of the final design of the scheme on 31 March 2000. Go to Australian Customs Notice 2000/14ffor details on the deferral scheme. The only change to the original proposal is that goods cleared from licensed Customs warehouses are covered by the deferral scheme.


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