Country Guide: East Timor (Timor Leste)

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Updated: November 16, 2016

Household Goods and Personal Effects

Documents Required

  • Copy of passport
  • Original bill of lading (OBL) / air waybill (AWB)
  • Packing list
  • Tax exemption certificate (obtained by the owner of the goods’ employer)
  • Employer’s tax identification number (TIN)
  • Letter of request for duty-free import (diplomats, employees of an aid organization)

 

Specific Information

  • Foreigners may import household goods and personal effects into East Timor duty free if having diplomatic status or working for a registered aid organization; if these criteria are met, only one sea and one air shipment are permitted duty free.
  • All foreigners and returning Timorese nationals, who do not have diplomatic status or work for a registered aid organization, may import household goods and personal effects subject to duties. 
    • The first USD 300.00 of value is duty free; thereafter duty will apply.
    • The duty amount varies and is often subject to negotiation with the Customs department. 
  • While the owner of the goods does not have to be physically present in East Timor during Customs clearance, a copy of his or her passport must be presented to the East Timor government at the time of clearance. 
    • Should any issued arise, it is best if the owner of the goods is in the country to assist.

Motor Vehicles

Documents Required

  • Copy of passport
  • OBL
  • Letter of request for duty-free import (diplomats, employees of an aid organization)

 

Specific Information

  • Only diplomats or employees of an aid organization may import a vehicle into East Timor duty free. 
    • A letter must be sent, similar in format to the one required for household goods, to the Customs department requesting duty free import.
  • Non-diplomats, foreigners, and Timorese nationals may import motor vehicles into Timor-Leste subject to duties. 
  • Cars must be less than 5 years old and be right-hand drive.
  • All motorbikes / motorcycles must be less than 5 years old and have an engine size less than 600 cc.

Pets

Documents Required

  • Vaccination record / card
  • Veterinary health record

 

Specific Information

  • Most pets, including dogs, cats, and birds, can be brought into East Timor with no quarantine period. 
  • The veterinary health certificate cannot be issued more than 7 days prior to import.

Restricted/Dutiable Items

  • Fruits and vegetables and byproducts (a phytosanitary certificate is required)

Prohibited Items

  • Narcotics
  • Firearms and ammunition
  • 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.

 

Helpful Website(s):

http://www.timorlesteembassy.org

http://timor-leste.gov.tl/?lang=en

http://www.state.gov/p/eap/ci/tt

 

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.