New tobacco import laws from 1 July 2019

From 1 July 2019, most tobacco products will be 'prohibited imports'. The new prohibition will cover all types of tobacco, including all the most commonly traded products cigarettes, molasses tobacco and loose leaf tobacco. Only limited exceptions will apply to cigars and smokeless tobacco, and for arriving international travellers bringing tobacco with them. Anyone who wants to import tobacco products into Australia will need to have a permit issued by the Department of Home Affairs.

Also from 1 July 2019, importers of tobacco will be required to pay all duty liabilities when the tobacco arrives at the border. This is a change from the current system that permits importers to store tobacco in licensed warehouses before paying customs duty.

The new tobacco import laws will not affect current arrangements for arriving international travellers bringing tobacco into Australia. Travellers will still be able to bring in tobacco, provided you declare any tobacco above your duty free allowance and pay any required duty upon arrival into Australia. Duty free allowances will not change as part of these measures.

If you fail to declare your tobacco, penalties may apply, including having your tobacco taken from you, your visa cancelled, financial penalties or prosecution.

For further information, see the Prohibited goods - Tobacco web page.

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