Bloomberg Tax
May 10, 2019, 4:02 AM

Gift Smuggling Dries Up in Mumbai as Alibaba Vendors Squeezed

Goods smuggled tax-free through foreign e-commerce platforms into one of India’s busiest ports of entry have dropped sharply after a recent crackdown, prompting business groups to urge the government to expand such efforts nationwide.

The crackdown is aimed at vendors on e-commerce sites like Alibaba that label their goods “gifts” and “samples” to avoid paying taxes.

Courier shipments worth 100,000 rupees ($1,439) or less coming to Mumbai airport fell 55% in the first quarter of 2019, according to customs department documents seen by Bloomberg Tax. Mumbai received 50,713 shipments in March, down from 113,101 in December.

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