Definition of import in English:

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Pronunciation: /imˈpôrt/
[with object]
1Bring (goods or services) into a country from abroad for sale: Japan’s reluctance to import more cars
More example sentences
  • ‘While the boom has been good for employment at the bottom, it is not so positive for the economy, as the retail goods are imported,’ he said.
  • And to protect domestic producers and production capacities it is possible for governments to impose tariffs on cheap imported goods.
  • The boom of those imported goods have brought more business not only to shipping and docking companies, but also to railroads that take them across the U.S.
buy from abroad, bring in, ship in
1.1Introduce (an idea) from a different place or context: new beliefs were often imported by sailors
More example sentences
  • We are importing ideas and concepts, embodied in media such as television programmes and music that are potentially deleterious to our society.
  • It is expected that there will be few, if any, imported ideas on how we reform and improve our education system.
  • This is him at his worst, blindly importing ideas not designed for Scottish circumstances.
derive, obtain, take, extract, glean
informal steal, crib, filch
1.2 Computing Transfer (data) into a file or document.
Example sentences
  • Exported data files can be imported into spreadsheets or other databases that recognize this format.
  • But there was no menu command to import files from a disk.
  • Once a file is imported, you need to change it to the proper format.
2 archaic Indicate or signify: having thus seen, what is imported in a Man’s trusting his Heart
2.1Express or make known: [with clause]: they passed a resolution importing that they relied on His Majesty’s gracious promise
More example sentences
  • As well as this radical departmentalizing of knowledge, Aristotle imports a further difference.


Pronunciation: /ˈimˌpôrt/
1 (usually imports) A commodity, article, or service brought in from abroad for sale.
Example sentences
  • It could then export the surplus of this commodity in exchange for imports produced by other countries with respective comparative cost advantages.
  • With cheap imports, excess production capacity, and anemic spending, consumer prices keep falling.
  • But he cannot increase the prices of his products because of pressure from cheaper imports from outside the EU.
imported goods, foreign goods, imported merchandise, foreign merchandise, imported commodities, foreign commodities
1.1 (imports) Sales of goods or services brought in from abroad, or the revenue from such sales: this surplus pushes up the yen, which ought to boost imports
More example sentences
  • This is particularly true when measuring retail sales and imports and exports, where changes in prices might reflect other factors (such as fluctuating exchange rates).
  • Tax revenues collected from imports and exports of goods this year are expected to be lower than the government's earlier target.
  • Although imports of capital goods used by factories have fallen, imports of cars, brand-name clothing, and other consumer goods are up.
1.2The action or process of importing goods or services: the import of live cattle from Canada
More example sentences
  • This aid, he said, could take the form of import duties or, in rare cases, prohibition of imports.
  • The higher import duty will first apply for six months and, if during investigation the government finds that the imports can seriously injure the local industries, it could stay in place for four years.
  • Taxes on foreign trade (both import duties and export taxes) are also relatively easily monitored and collected.
importation, importing, introduction, bringing in, bringing from abroad, shipping in
2 [in singular] The meaning or significance of something, especially when not directly stated: the import of her message is clear
More example sentences
  • I hope the answers to these questions can at least provide a basic understanding of the import of the message.
  • The suggested amendments do not in any way change the import or substance of my order.
  • Harrison's normally-expressive flint-blue eyes turned shark-like as he savoured the import of those words, turning them over in his mind like a terrier worrying a bone.
meaning, sense, essence, gist, drift, purport, connotation, message, thrust, point, substance, implication
2.1Great significance; importance: pronouncements of world-shaking import
More example sentences
  • They quite simply have no statistical value and should never be used for questions of serious import.
  • They are momentary events of great import and even beauty.
  • Everything else is of little import, of little weight on the human conscience and pales in significance.
importance, significance, consequence, momentousness, magnitude, substance, weight, note, gravity, seriousness
formal moment



Pronunciation: /imˈpôrdəb(ə)l/
Example sentences
  • many reasonably competitive manufacturing industries making exportable and importable products were suddenly exposed to the full rigors of world competition, and have either closed down or emigrated to Australia.
  • The bank, rather than providing that information to him in a form that was importable into his word processing and mail merge software, gave it to him in plain paper, forcing him to type it in.
  • Moreover, while he knew that cheaper generics were importable, he said he would not go out of his way to make them available.


Late Middle English (in the sense 'signify'): from Latin importare 'bring in' (in medieval Latin 'imply, mean, be of consequence'), from in- 'in' + portare 'carry'.

  • transport from Late Middle English:

    Transport is from Latin transportare, from trans- ‘across’ and portare ‘carry’. The word's use to denote ‘a means of transportation’ arose in the use of transport ships to carry soldiers or convicts, and later army supplies. Import (Late Middle English) and export (Late Middle English) are the carrying of goods in and out of the country.

Words that rhyme with import

abort, apport, assort, athwart, aught, besought, bethought, bort, bought, brought, caught, cavort, comport, consort, contort, Cort, court, distraught, escort, exhort, export, extort, fort, fought, fraught, methought, misreport, mort, naught, nought, Oort, ought, outfought, port, Porte, purport, quart, rort, short, snort, sort, sought, sport, support, swart, taught, taut, thought, thwart, tort, transport, wart, wrought

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: im·port

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