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Santo Domingo
Thursday, July 21, 2022

Deputies approve Christmas grace for Dominican diaspora

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An initiative that seeks to allow Dominicans from abroad to bring gifts for an amount not exceeding US$2,500 was approved by the Chamber of Deputies.

The project, by several foreign legislators, modifies Law No. 9-96 of September 9, 1996, which exempts from import taxes gifts brought to the country by residents abroad to relatives and friends who visit the country for the Christmas and New Year holidays.

Although Law No. 9-96 provides a grace of US$1,000, for several years the General Directorate of Customs has increased the amount of the “Christmas grace”, where only last year it had a value of US$4,000.

Within the recitals, the commission that studied the project indicated that the Dominican diaspora has become one of the sectors that has served as a “source of support for economic growth” and that it is a tradition for Dominicans residing abroad to bring gifts to their families.

In that sense, he also considers that due to the rise in the dollar and inflation since Law No. 9-96 was approved, it is therefore necessary to update the item or ceiling of the value of the gifts that Dominicans bring to the country.

Taking this as an argument, article 4 establishes that the total of gifts brought by Dominicans from the diaspora may not exceed the sum of US$2,500, repealing Law No.9-96.

The initiative was approved in two consecutive readings, so it will now go to the Senate of the Republic.

With regard to Customs Law 168-21, it makes a modification in article 324, on the exemption of other merchandise, so that it reads as follows: “Those objects or articles brought by Dominicans residing abroad to the country and who have not entered the national territory in the last six months and that said objects or articles do not have commercial purposes.

It also adds a paragraph that allows the transport of gifts by the route in which the trip deems convenient “provided that the value of the transported goods does not exceed the amount established by this law and is not in commercial quantities, allowing only one unit of each type of merchandise, especially in the case of electrical appliances.

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