Importing a car is a complex process because there are a considerable number of restrictions and regulations with which you must comply. These restrictions are put in place to ensure that all the vehicles on the roads meet the required standards when it comes to maintaining a safe environment for all the road users. Therefore, to make sure your car importation process is a success, especially if it's your first time doing it, here are some crucial things you should know.
There Are a Number of Options Under Which to Import the Car
The first step to importing a car is finding out which import option you can apply under. This is because there are multiple import options, which means you will need to import yours under the specific option for that kind of car. For instance, if you intend to import the old or historic vehicles, then you will have to apply under an option for vehicles manufactured before a given year. There's also the personal import option if you are moving in to the country from overseas and would like to bring your car with you.
However, this is usually subject to conditions such as having owned it for a given period (which you can find out from the relevant government department—oftentimes infrastructure and regional development). Some of the other options include luxury car imports, cars not available in the country, and plated vehicle options, which include cars that were initially exported from the country but are now being re-imported. The government department responsible will have all the information you need on import options.
You Will Need an Import Approval
After understanding the option under which you will import your car, you need to apply for an import approval. This is crucial because you need the approval document for your car to be cleared from the customs control. Applications for import approvals can be done online on the website of the relevant government department. You can also print the application out and mail it. Import approvals are also subject to certain conditions, so be extra keen when applying to avoid breaching any of the conditions because it can be considered as an offence.
Once you're done with the above steps, you can then simply arrange for shipping, get your customs clearance, satisfy the quarantine requirements, meet the conditions of the import approval, and register the vehicle. Under quarantine requirements, a quarantine entry is often lodged and an inspection time scheduled.
Your car should pass the inspection or else you will need another inspection, which is usually at your own cost. Conditions of import approval will usually involve modifying your car to make it compliant to the standards and getting an approval for an identification plate.