A tariff is a kind of tax on goods a country imports or exports. If you want to buy a European-made car in the U.S., the price will include tariffs the government adds to the price of imported vehicles.

Usually a government imposes a tariff to encourage its own industries and to discourage buying cheaper imports from other countries. If a government wants to protect its own clothing industry, it may add a tariff to imported clothing, to make sure that the imported clothes aren't cheaper than the locally manufactured items. You can control exports, too, by imposing tariffs. As a verb, you can say "the government tariffs certain imports and exports."

Definitions of tariff

n a government tax on imports or exports

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custom, customs, customs duty, impost
money collected under a tariff
tonnage, tonnage duty, tunnage
a tax imposed on ships that enter the US; based on the tonnage of the ship
a tax on various goods brought into a town
revenue tariff
a tariff imposed to raise revenue
protective tariff
a tariff imposed to protect domestic firms from import competition
import duty
a duty imposed on imports
export duty
a duty imposed on exports
countervailing duty
a duty imposed to offset subsidies by foreign governments
ship money
an impost levied in England to provide money for ships for national defense
anti-dumping duty
a tariff imposed to prevent dumping
Type of:
indirect tax
a tax levied on goods or services rather than on persons or organizations

v charge a tariff

tariff imported goods”
Type of:
levy a tax on

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