Chinese shopping websites shipping to India were under scrutiny for exploiting a loophole that allowed Indian citizens to receive duty-free gifts and samples.
Chinese fashion brand Shein returns to India with Amazon Marketplace, a year and a half after the fashion site, famous for its latest styles and affordable prices, was temporarily banned from selling products in India alongside Clubhouse and Ali Express for evading tax rules. The site was later blocked by the Home Office as part of India's crackdown on Chinese apps in 2020.
In 2019, the site was forced to pause shipping orders and begin reimbursing customers after a crackdown by the Mumbai Customs Department over allegations that Chinese shopping sites paid lower-than-normal rates. that they really should. Then more than 500 parcels belonging to Shane and Club House were seized. The forfeiture order showed Shein's Mumbai warehouse was closed after officials found it undervalued and incorrectly declared the goods, according to a July 2 report from Business Standard.
Chinese shopping sites shipping to India were underscan to take advantage of a loophole that allowed Indian citizens to receive duty-free gifts and samples valued at less than Rs 5,000 from abroad. Many companies are known to take advantage of this clause to avoid paying taxes on the package. Companies were also categorizing packages as carriers (B-2-B) instead of B-2-C.
In December 2019, the Directorate General of Foreign Trade of India said that packages marked as gifts received from abroad will be subject to import duties. The DGFT order caused a temporary setback for shopping sites.
Then, in June 2020, as part of a broader crackdown by the Indian government, several very popular Chinese apps were banned in India in the wake of escalating tensions on the Indochina border. These include TikTok, Weibo, WeChat, AliExpress, Shein, CamScanner, and others. The apps were ordered to be removed from the Google Playstore and Apple App Store.
Now, Amazon Fashion has listed Shein as part of the 2021 Prime Day Sale that will launch between July 26-27. Shein will undoubtedly appear on Amazon as a seller. Meanwhile, Shein's website for Indian buyers remains inaccessible.
Shein has become popular with millennial shoppers who order from the site primarily due to its low prices and modern fashion.
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