R.D.T.F: Rules / Regulations, Duty, Tax, Facts, these are the four major facts we will be looking at. Currently we have new car importation rules at Mombasa so I thought I should let you know what is expected of you before you think of bringing in that BMW or Benz or Bentley.
Rules and Regulations
There are three main regulations that you must follow when exporting or importing vehicles:
- Age Limit: Vehicles manufactured before the year 2001 (i.e above 8yrs old) are not allowed for importation into Kenya.
- Left Hand Drive Vehicles: All left hand drive vehicles are not allowed for registration unless they have a special purpose e.g. Ambulances etc.
- Road Worthiness: All used vehicles imported into Kenya must be inspected to ensure road worthiness, safety and other requirements.
Duties and Tax Payable
They are both derived as follows:
Import duty at 25%, Excise duty at 20% and VAT at 16% are payable cumulatively and in that order. Therefore:
- Import duty is 25% of the Customs value (CIF) of the vehicle i.e. 25% of (Invoice value + Insurance + Freight charges)
- Excise duty is 20% of (Customs Value + Import Duty)
- VAT is 16% of (Customs Value + Import Duty + Excise Duty)
Further, an Import Declaration Fee (IDF) of 2.25% of the CIF is also charged subject to a minimum of Ksh. 5,000 payable in advance on application.
*CIF – Cost, Insurance and Freight
Still under duty and taxation we have:
1. Returning Residents
This is a person changing residence from a place outside Kenya to a place within Kenya where that person has been residing outside Kenya for a period of at least two years and has not resided in Kenya for a period(s) amounting in aggregate to ninety days or more within the two years immediately before this return to Kenya.
If you have bought a vehicle outside Kenya and would like to ship it home, an importer will do all pre-shipment documentation, clearance through the port and registration. As per the current import regulations, they will also require copies of your National ID/Passport and PIN certificate.
A returning resident may import one exempt motor vehicle (excluding buses and minibuses of seating capacity of more than 13 passengers and load carrying capacity exceeding two tonnes) Provided that:
- The person has attained the age of eighteen years
- The vehicle was used by him and owned by him outside Kenya for a continuous period of 12 months (excluding the period of voyage in the case of shipment)
- The vehicle is owned and registered in his name and/or his spouse. Where the motor vehicle is purchased on hire purchase terms, the first installment in respect thereof was paid and delivery taken at least three hundred and sixty days prior to importation
However, vehicles belonging to returning residents must abide to the Kenyan standards as stipulated by the Kenya bureau of standards (K.B.S). The importation of Used Motor Vehicles into Kenya is covered under the Kenya Standard Code of Practice for Inspection of Road Vehicles KS03 1515:2000.The Standard spells out three major criteria for acceptances of the Vehicles for importation. These are:
- Age Limit: All road vehicles, which are more than eight years old from the year of manufacture, shall not be allowed for importation. Currently we are exporting cars manufactured in 2003 and after.
- Left Hand Drive: All left hand drive vehicles are not allowed for registration unless they are for special purpose i.e. Ambulances, Fire Tenders and large construction vehicles imported for projects and to be eventually donated the Kenya Government.
- Road Worthiness: All used vehicles imported into Kenya shall be inspected for Road Worthiness, safety and other requirements.
2. Other Parties
Vehicles for diplomatic or consulate missions, Vehicles for the United Nations or its specialized agencies, Vehicles for Foreign Embassies, Donor Agencies, Specifically designed vehicles to be used by the blind, disabled and physically handicapped persons, rally drivers – certain exemptions, vehicles for aid funded projects etc.
Facts on Importation
- Excise duty on all vehicles is now 20% irrespective of engine size
- 20% dumping fees on all vehicles has been removed
- Cumulative taxes on all vehicles has been set at 76.75% of dutiable value
- Import duty is 25% of dutiable value.
- Excise Duty 20% of Excise Duty Value.
- VAT is 16% of VAT value.
- Import Declaration Form (I. D. F.) processing fees is 2.75% with a minimum of shs 5,000 that is paid in advance on application.
- Calculated cumulatively, Import Duty+ Excise Duty + V.A.T+IDF will work out to 76.75% on all vehicles irrespective of engine size.
- AGE LIMIT – I Kenya Importation of used vehicles is limited to eight years. All used motor vehicles originating from Japan and the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E) -Dubai, will be subject to destination inspection. Importers of vehicles from Japan and the U.A.E will be expected to present their motor vehicles to Japan Auto Appraisal Institute (JAAI) in Japan and JAAI/ CAAC in Dubai who will inspect the motor vehicles and issue a certificate of road worthiness, which shall be presented for clearance purposes.
- Pre-shipment inspection by Cotecna and Bivac International is no longer a requirement from 1st July 2005. Dutiable values will now be determined by custom authorities at Mombasa Port.
- Import Declaration Forms (IDFs) will be processed by KRA-customs services.
- Import duty, excise duty, VAT and I. D. F fees are calculated based on dutiable value which is not necessarily the purchase price.
- 50% import duty on motor vehicles, based on the C.I.F. value
- 40% sales tax
- 25% import duty on components for vehicle assembly
- No local content requirements exist, but components manufactured locally may not be imported.
- No export requirements
- An import license accompanied by a 100 percent refundable prior import deposit is required
- Importing medium and heavy-duty commercial vehicles with a 3-ton or more load capacity is prohibited unless they are completely dismantled and contain no components that may be produced locally.
- Importers have been directed to seek 90 to 180 days credit overseas.
- Import protection is accorded to local producers of the following automotive components: sealers, adhesives, batteries, tires, tubes, paints, flat glass, canvas, soft trim, upholstery, insulation, radiators, exhaust systems, leaf springs, spare wheel carriers, seat frames, wiring harnesses, and brake linings.
So we have looked at the R.D.T.Fs on importation and exportation but there is also something else you need to know.
Importation Declaration Form (IDF)
An IDF must be applied for and obtained from the Kenya Revenue Authority for any Commercial Importation. The Importer is responsible for applying for the IDF but may consult us for purposes of Customs Classifications which form the backbone of the information drawn from the Pro-Forma Invoice.
The IDF Fee is 2.75% of the CIF Value of the goods. A minimum payment of Ksh.5000/= is payable for the IDF to be issued, while the difference if any, will be paid alongside the Import Taxes. The IDF may set Conditions such as the following:
- Value – The IDF gives the indication as to whether the Values declared thereon are final. If not final, then an Appraisal of Value must be sort with the Valuation Section of the Customs Services Department. In this case, a complete set of the Shipping documents will be attached to the Appraisal Of Value Request Form following which a Value Certificate is issued. The process could involve physical verification of the goods.
- Quality/Quantity – Other control bodies such the Kenya Bureau of Standards, Public Health Department, Department of Agriculture (Kephis) and Mines & Geology Department may be asked to determine if the expected standards have been met. Incase of suspicion, Tests may be carried out and Certificates/Permits issued. Under this criteria, test Certificates from accredited bodies may be required.
- Classification – The Customs Services Department may be asked to determine the correctness of the classification for purposes of collection of the correct Taxes. This may involve Physical verification and/or Computer Scanning.
- Pre-Verification – All Items originating from Dubai, Hong Kong and China including Textiles, Electronics, Motor Vehicles & Spares will be subjected to Pre-verification by the Customs Valuation Section who will accordingly issue a Certificate to the effect.
The Kenya Bureau of Standards has appointed two agents namely INTERTEK and SGS for the Pre-export Verification of Conformity inspection of the commodities listed on the Guidelines referred bellow. These agents will issue to the Shipper/Supplier a Certificate of Conformity and the Test Results. An IDF will be required before any Inspection can be performed.
See attached Guidelines from The Kenya Bureau of Standards which is self explanatory. Please also be advised that these guidelines are being updated by KBS without any alert.
Customs Import Entry
The following documents are required for Customs Import Entry Purposes
- Original Commercial Invoice
- Packing List
- Original Bills of Lading – Two Original
- Original Certificate of Conformity
- Original Test Result/Report/Analysis
- Original Certificate of Origin for Preferential Trade Area Partners e.g. COMESA.
- Import Declaration Form and the Receipt
- Insurance Debit Note
- Importers Declaration(C52)
These documents will enable Electronic Registration of The Customs Entry. The registered entry will be passed for eventual release of the goods upon:
- Payment of Import Taxes
- Providing a Security Bond
Import Taxes are payable to the appointed Bank upon confirmation of the Registration of the Entry. The Banks Electronic Confirmation of Receipt of Payment of Import Taxes enables the Customs Entry to be passed for further processing at the Port of clearance.
Security Bonds are executed and put in force against the Entry as an Undertaking or Guarantee to settle the Import Taxes at a later date as per the provisions of the relevant section of the Act.
Some Importations can be entered under a Security Bond instead of payments of Taxes. The Bonds could be provided to cover:
- The movement from the Port of clearance into a Customs Bonded Warehouse
- The movement from the Port of clearance into a Customs Export Processing Zone Bonded Warehouse
- The movement from the Port of clearance into a Customs Manufacture Under Bond Warehouse
- Temporary Importations
- Foreign Aided or Government Funded Projects
The above are governed by the guidelines provided under the Customs Act.
The Customs Act has provided privileges of exemptions from Import Taxes to a number of institutions and people but within set guidelines. The guidelines are either under the category of:
- Special Exemptions
- General Exemptions
There are Special Permits obtained from the related authority to support the exemptions.
One Copy of the Bill Of Lading dully endorsed by the Importers and Bankers will be presented to the Shipping/Carriers local Agent who will issue a Delivery Order (D/O) upon the following conditions:
- Payment of Freight Charges if not Pre-Paid
- Payment of Container Deposit and/or Demurrages if FCL
- Signing of a Container Guarantee
- Payment of Other Charges e.g. Stripping of LCL
The Delivery Order then forms a part of the Cargo Clearance Documents including the Approved Customs Entry and the Mombasa Port Release Order.
Adopted from: http://www.sonimotors.net
Also you can visit: www.kenyapvoc.com/guidelines.pdf to get the current version of the quality inspections document.