Chinese made radios becoming difficult to source in Australia

posted in: Ham radio | 7

I’ve noticed over the last couple of months that its becoming increasingly difficult for Amateurs in Australia to buy a whole swathe of Chinese made radios.

For example on AliExpress, on some radios, as soon as I select the delivery country of Australia, I get a message saying that the vendor doesn’t ship to Australia

I’ve heard anecdotal reports that this seems to apply to radios from all the major Chinese manufacturers including TYT, Baofeng and Radioddity, but possibly this may only apply to Australian buyers.


Its not totally impossible to buy these radios, but its becoming difficult and increasingly expensive.

For example on eBay Australia the cheapest price for the Radioddity GD-77 is $169.99 AUD (approximately $120 US Dollars)

Whereas on (USA), the same radio is available for around $80.


I’m not sure if this its just that suppliers have decided that its the new Australian taxation laws, which appear to require any overseas company selling to customers in Australia to register with the Australian Tax Office, (ATO) and collect GST on behalf of the ATO, which is putting companies off selling to Australia.

Or whether it that Australia is a small marketplace and its not worth the trouble.

Or perhaps whether this is a much wider problem which is possibly being caused by the current trade battles going on across the world.

Or the FCC changes in the USA



But the end result is that the ubiquitous Chinese made handheld radios, that most of us now use, seem to be slowly becoming more of a rarity

7 Responses

  1. ken

    thanks for the info, very interesting worrying times

  2. Jon Dresser

    I have heard that Chinese made radios were being banned outright from import into the U.S. – though I cannot site my source on that. Either way, Glad I got mine before then.

  3. Roger Clark

    Probably the thin edge of the wedge for banning lots of Chinese products.

  4. Laurent

    I’m French, so excuse my English if i do misspelling..
    I think it’s a bit funny that some countries expect they could ban chinese, or any other asian, products.
    Especially because all manufactured products here in the Euro zone contain PCB or specifics parts “made in China”, and this since many years :p
    So now, they are even unable to repair their own products, they only replace whole parts inside, that they have in stock to repair, too funny.
    They can’t ban their products, they are used by all brands here. And most of time brands have even not the schematics. 😉

    I don’t know in Australia but here in EU you can believe me, if they wont get a market “down”, they’ll must accept to continue with chinese and all over asian products 🙂

    Best wishes from France.

  5. Roger Clark

    I think recent Australian government tax changes have causes a lot of companies to reconsider whether its worth selling into Australia

    AFIK, any company that wants to sell products in Australia (no matter where they are in the world) must now register with the Australian Tax Office and collect GST on behalf of the Australian government for any products they sell into Australia.

    This move prompted to stop shipping to Australia. Note Amazon has an Australian division, but it only sells a very small proportion of the items available on or etc. Probably 10% of the products.

    Take a look for yourself

  6. Peter

    Insane, a MMDVM Hotspot + Raspberry Pie + OLED + Antenna + Case cost 435-490 dollar including shipping. Which currency, AUD or USD? Anyway, it’s still expensive if it’s Australian dollars.

    The same kit without a Raspberry Pie from Aliexpress cost 30-35 USD. Then you only need to buy a Raspberry Pie Zero W and a microSD card to each kit. The total price for three hotspot kits cost me $150 USD including shipping and Value Added Tax (VAT).

    The revenue agency in my country (Sweden) tried to negotiate with Alibaba (Aliexpress) to deduct VAT directly from their customers. They failed and left this task to the post office instead. This led to chaos when the post office was forced to deduct VAT from 150,000 packages a day arriving at the capital’s international airport.

    People ignored paying VAT for cheap goods which resulted in further chaos when the post offices had to store all parcels before sending them back to the country of origin. It took a whole year for everything to return to normal conditions again. Today I have to wait two weeks longer before the package arrives.

    When the post office began to send parcels back to China, some stores immediately stopped selling to customers in my country. Some stores raised the freight charge tremendously, making it unprofitable to continue shopping.

  7. Roger Clark


    I don’t know of anyone who actually buys anything from Amazon Australia, the prices for Ham Radio devices are extremely high and the selection is extremely small.

    On eBay Australia the Cheapest Radioddity GD-77 I can find, is over $200

    But the list price on Radioddity’s site is $140 AUD.

    I have to ask my friends in the UK to buy radios for me, and I have to then pay the shipping costs from the UK, which makes it marginally cheaper than buying from eBay vendors in the USA.

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