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David Bodwell

May 15, 2002, 8:32 PM

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Books, duty & taxes

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I have just read the discussion thread on Alternatives to the Postal System and Duty on Books. Having been in the English Language book business in Mexico for going on 5 years I have some corrections and additions to make. Imported books of any type have NO duty (per NAFTA)regardless of what Sanborns DIMSA says (They are just trying to justify their rip-off prices). If aduana wants to charge you duty on a book or books you're getting you just have to make up your mind whether the amount asked for is a reasonable mordida (for the PC - propina) or not and if not whether you want to pursue it further. As someone else said - you still don't have your book(s) until it's settled. Also, sometimes aduana tries to charge you IVA if there is a value stated. This is PURE mordida as ALL books in Mexico always have been and still are exempt from IVA. This was re-stated in the Tax Reform Act that just took effect.
Just a comment on the Postal System vi-a-vi books. If I order a book or two from - say Amazon - I have it shipped cheapest way to a person in the US who then UNPACKS it and puts it and the invoice in a US Postal Service International Priority Mail cardboard envelope (almost identical to a FedEx envelope) and mails it to me in Mexico. These envelopes have a flat rate to Mexico of approx. US$7.00 (this seems to have changed slightly just recently and I don't know the new price) and you are allowed up to 4 lbs. The person doing the re-shipping might have to INSIST on this envelope as I've found not all of the USPS branches know about it. I don't know how you would get 4 lbs. in one unless you were shipping lead. They take about the same time as a letter from the US to Mexico - 1 to 4 weeks (it seems the USPS treats them as priority but the Mex. Postal Service doesn't, going by the various stamps on them they seem to always take just 1 or 2 days to reach Mexico but then ???????).
Hope this information is useful,
David Bodwell
Mazatlán Book & Coffee Company

 
 
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