​Government slaps new 150% import duties on alcohol

The Indonesian Finance Ministry today put into effect a new import duty system that could lead to dramatic increases in the price of alcoholic drinks in Indonesia.

The new regulation, which was signed by Finance Minister Bambang Brodjonegoro on July 8, introduces a new percentage-based system to determine the import duty on alcoholic drinks. 

All fermented beverages including wine and cider are new subject to an import duty of 90% of the beverages original price. In the ministry’s previous 2011 regulation, the same beverages were subject to an import duty of Rp 55,000 per liter. 

Most notably, the new regulation slaps a whopping 150% import duty on hard liquor and spirits including brandy, whisky, gin and vodka. Previously, they were subject to an import duty of Rp 125,000 per liter.

Now, the new percentage-based system could either make the retail price of a product more or less expensive. But considering imported wines and spirits are expensive to begin with, it seems very unlikely that the import duty will now be below Rp 55,000 or Rp 125,000 per liter.

So, from now on, it’s probably best to stock up on booze from duty free shops at airports.

On the bright side, the duty on imported beer remains at Rp 14,000 per liter. Had it gone up, we would’ve had no choice but to only drink Bintang or Angker.

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