- For you to have your car cleared by the country’s customs, you need to contract a licensed clearing agent to process your declaration in the KRA system.
- All used vehicles imported into Kenya must be inspected for roadworthiness, safety and other requirements.
The Kenya Bureau of Standards (KeBS) recently issued a notice on the importation of used or second-hand motor vehicles.
The notice appearing on a weekly update dated December 5, notified all importers that vehicles whose year of first registration is from January 1, 2017, and later shall only be allowed into the country.
The rule affects returning residents, diplomatic staff and the general public.
It further stated that beginning January 1, 2024, only right-hand drive vehicles will be allowed into the country.
Are you planning to import one?
For you to have your car cleared by the country’s customs, you need to contract a licensed clearing agent to process your declaration in the KRA system.
A list of licensed clearing agents is available at https://www.kra.go.ke/images/publications/clearing-agents.pdf
According to the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), the clearing agent will then lodge an import entry in the system, pay the required duties and taxes and present all the relevant documents for Customs to pass the entry.
The vehicle must meet Kenya Bureau of Standards (KBS) KS 1515:2000-Code of Practice for Inspection of Road Vehicles before clearance.
The Code of Practice specifies general, safety and environmental requirements for Road Vehicles and also includes inspection schedules for Road Vehicles.
It spells out three major criteria which are age limit, left hand drive and that all vehicles imported into Kenya must be inspected for roadworthiness, safety, and other requirements.
The Code states that a vehicle should not be more than eight years old from the year of manufacture (year of first registration).
All left-hand drive vehicles are not allowed for registration in Kenya unless they are for special purposes.
These could be ambulances, fire tenders and large construction vehicles imported for projects and to be eventually donated to the Kenyan government.
All used vehicles imported into Kenya must be inspected for roadworthiness, safety and other requirements.
Some of the documents required for importation and clearance of the used or second-hand vehicles are the original Commercial Invoice and original Bill of Lading.
Also required are the import Declaration Form obtained from Customs and authentic original Logbook from the country of origin and a certificate of roadworthiness.
KRA, in a notice, on its website says it does not accept a Certificate of Export issued by Dubai Police or any other authority as a substitute for a foreign Logbook.
If the Logbook is in a foreign language, it adds, an English translation issued by the respective Embassy, High Commission, or Consulate based here in Kenya must be presented to Customs to authenticate the foreign logbook.
“If you purchase a previously exempt vehicle, you are required to contact a licensed clearing agent to lodge an entry with Customs. The vehicle must be presented for inspection by Customs before the entry document is accepted,” it states.
If the vehicle is found to conform to the required standards, the processing officer will accept payment and pass the entry upon full payment of the relevant duties and taxes.
Duties and taxes payable
Import duty is 25 percent of the Customs value (CIF) of the vehicle that is 25 percent of (Invoice value + Insurance + Freight charges), Excise duty is 20 percent of (Customs Value + Import Duty) for vehicles with 1500 cc and below and 25 percent for vehicles above 1500 cc.
VAT is 16 percent of (Customs Value + Import Duty + Excise Duty), Rail Development Levy of 2 percent of customs value (CIF) and Import Declaration Fee (IDF) of 3.5 percent of the CIF.
Any car imported from some countries shall be accompanied by a Certificate of Roadworthiness (CoR) issued by Quality Inspection Services Inc. Japan which is an inspection company contracted by KEBS.
The particular countries are Japan, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, Thailand, Singapore and South Africa.
Additional information from KRA.