Javascript Module - Import (Es Module)


The import statement for a es module

The ES6 import statement is used to import:

that have been exported from:

  • ES6
import Member from "ModuleName";
var Member = require("ModuleName").default;

This feature is not implemented in any browsers natively at this time. It is implemented in many transpilers.

Not to be confound with the import expression in CSS. See CSS - @import rule.

@import url('');



import defaultMember from "module-name"; 
import defaultMember, { member [ , [...] ] } from "module-name";
import defaultMember, * as name from "module-name";
  • Import an entire module namespace object where the properties are the module’s exports with the alias 'name'. 'name' is inserted into the current scope.
import * as name from "module-name";
// if the “module-name” module exports a function named foo(), you can write:
  • Import a single member of a module. This inserts member into the current scope.
import { member } from "module-name";
import { member as alias } from "module-name";
  • Import multiple members of a module.
import { member1 , member2 } from "module-name";
import { member1 , member2 as alias2 , [...] } from "module-name";
  • Import an entire module for side effects only, without importing any bindings.
import "module-name";



Module Location

  • Supported:
// Via the http(s) scheme
import {foo} from '';
// Full Qualified
import {foo} from '/foo/bar.js';
// Relative
import {foo} from './bar.js';
import {foo} from '../bar.js';
  • Supported using NODE_PATH in some module loader
import {foo} from 'bar.js';
import {foo} from 'foo/bar.js';

Mozilla Doc

  • Module:
// --file.js--
function getJSON(url, callback) {
  let xhr = new XMLHttpRequest();
  xhr.onload = function () { 
  };'GET', url, true);

export function getUsefulContents(url, callback) {
  getJSON(url, data => callback(JSON.parse(data)));
  • Import
import { getUsefulContents } from 'myModuleFile.js';
getUsefulContents('', data => {


SyntaxError: Cannot use import statement outside a module

SyntaxError: Cannot use import statement outside a module

You get this error when you try to use an import statement on Node. Why ?

How to resolve:

  • use the require syntax
  • or use a transpiler such as babel to transform your ES module to a CommonJs module

Example from Babel

yarn add @babel/preset-env --dev
    // To be able to use import 
    "presets": [
                "targets": {
                    "esmodules": true

Documentation / Reference

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