Country Guide: Benin

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Updated: November 17, 2015

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Used Household Goods and Personal Effects

Documents Required

  • Packing list
  • Copy of Passport
  • Original Bill of Lading (OBL) - no Express Release accepted / Air Waybill (2 copies)
  • Bordereau de Suivi de Cargaisons (BSC) / Cargo Tracking Note (CTN)
  • Original valued inventory in French, dated and signed by the shipper
  • Invoice for all electrical items less than 6 months old
  • Resident / Work Permit / Letter of Employment
  • Non-sale Certificate
  • Diplomatic Exemption Certificate (Diplomats)


Specific Information

  • The OBL must clearly indicate the weight in kilograms, the number of items, and also state "personal belongings."
  • The weight of the vehicle, if applicable, must be shown separately from weight of the personal effects.
  • The BSC must be attached to the OBL.
  • If BSC is not available, a penalty of 150 Euro will have to be paid in Benin.
  • Resident / Work Permit / or Letter of Employment must explain that client is starting a new contract in Benin.
  • The Non-sale Certificate must state that the client will not sell personal effects in Benin.
  • Documents must be provided to agent prior to the arrival of the shipment to obtain duty-free clearance.
  • All import shipments are subject to Customs inspection.
  • Household goods are allowed in Benin duty free if they have been in the owner`s possession for at least 6 months.
  • All Diplomat and non-Diplomat shipments are subject to a 3.65% import tax based on the declared value.
  • A Diplomatic Exemption Certificate must be obtained before arrival of the goods to avoid storage charges.

Motor Vehicles

Documents Required

  • Original Registration Card
  • Original Bill of Lading / Freight Invoice
  • Non-sale Certificate
  • Origin Certificate


Specific Information

  • Taxes on car will depend on age, power, etc.
  • Approximately 50% CIF if no exemption
  • 0.15% if diplomatic
  • 5.85% if temporary admission
  • The OBL must show chassis number, engine number, cubic capacity, year of manufacture, brand and model.


Documents Required

  • Veterinarian Health Certificate
  • Rabies Vaccination Certificate from origin country


Specific Information

  • Documents must be received by agent prior to import.

Restricted/Dutiable Items

  • Firearms and ammunitions (authorization from the territorial administration required)
  • Drugs
  • Alcohol (only “Fond de Cave”) is acceptable and duty free (maximum 12 bottles)
  • Cigarettes (200), cigars (25), cigarillos (100), tobacco (250 g)
  • Eau de toilette (500 ml)
  • Perfume (250 ml)
  • Guns, explosives and ammunition (authorization required)
  • Knives and deadly weapons (authorization required)
  • Plant and plant products (authorization is required)
  • Meat and meat products (authorization is required)

Prohibited Items

  • Illegal drugs
  • Hazardous materials
  • Animals and pets
  • Asbestos
  • Precious metals and stones
  • Ivory
  • Furs
  • Gambling devices
  • Counterfeit money and goods
  • Pornographic materials

Consignment Instructions

Recommended: Contact the destination agent to ensure all requirements have been met prior to import, especially for differences regarding air / sea shipments.


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IAM Note: Customs regulations can change at any time with or without notice. This document is provided as a guide and for information only. While IAM has exercised reasonable care in publishing this document, IAM makes no representation, either expressed or implied, as to its accuracy or applicability.