Country Guide: Kenya
Household Goods and Personal Effects
- Original Passport (for returning residents, a Passport used for the last 2 years or any previous Passport other than the current Passport are also required; the Entry and Exit stamps are used by Customs to check the compliance of the regulation)
- Original Bill of Lading (OBL) / Air Waybill (AWB)
- Original Work Permit
- Packing list
- Form C-18 Declaration, signed by shipper (Baggage Claim form)
- Detailed inventory
- PRO 1B (Diplomats)
- PRO 1A (Diplomats)
- The shipper must be present for Customs clearance.
- All shipments will be inspected by Customs.
- All cosmetics, toiletries, perfumes, alcohol and foodstuffs will be subjected to radioactive analysis which will cost Kshs 3,000 per sample per item.
- Computers are not classified as personal effects and are subject to tax and duties.
- All wooden crates need (ISPM) No. 15 requirements.
- For non-Diplomats, the goods must have been owned for more than 1 year by the shipper and must be imported within 90 days after approval of the Work Permit.
- Documents must be received by agent 15 days prior to arrival in order for shipper’s employer to obtain the Duty-Free Exemption Certificate, if applicable (Diplomats).
- Diplomatic goods are not subject to inspection with an approved PRO 1B in place (Diplomats).
- The PRO 1A is required if importing alcohol and must be approved by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Diplomats).
- Diplomats must apply for exemption from duty and value added tax (VAT) through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kenya; the approval for the exemption can take several months.
- Returning residents must have lived abroad for more than 2 consecutive years and cannot have visited Kenya for a total of more than 90 days from last date of entry in Kenya for duty-free import; shipment must be imported within 3 months of entry date.
- For the duty-free importation of personal effects, the shipper must have owned the items for at least 1 year prior to import (returning residents).
- The shipper must not have visited Kenya for a total of more than 90 days in the last 2 years prior to his last date of entry in Kenya (returning residents)
- Original Passport
- Original Work Permit
- Personal Identification Number (PIN) Certificate
- Original Certificate of Registration / Logbook of the vehicle in English
- Import Declaration Form (IDF)
- Certificate of Conformity (COC)
- If a shipper wants to pay duties on the car, the following document will be required:
- Importer's PIN Certificate
- Import Declaration Form (IDF) plus IDF charges to be paid (EUR 50)
- Purchase Invoice in English
- PRO 1B form approved by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Diplomats)
- Left-hand drive vehicles cannot be imported.
- Vehicles older than 8 years cannot be imported.
- A fee of EUR 120 for processing must be paid to Kenyan Customs.
- If the IDF is not available, a penalty of 15% of the cost, insurance and freight (CIF) value of the car will be charged by the Kenyan Bureau of Standards (non-Diplomats and expatriates).
- The Certificate of Road Worthiness must be provided by the owner of the vehicle to the Kenya Bureau of Standards agent (JEVIC); it is required for a pre-inspection at origin to obtain the Certificate of Conformity (COC) for cars coming from Japan / Dubai Singapore / South Africa / UK (cars from origins than these can be inspected in Kenya by KBS for a fee of EUR 150).
- The OBL and AWB must show the details of the motor vehicle (e.g., chassis and engine numbers, make, model, color, etc.)
- The shipper must have owned the vehicle for at least 1 year for duty-free import or approximately 61% of taxes will be charged.
- All shipment documentation must be sent to agent at least 1 month prior to shipment arrival to reduce the possibility of demurrage / storage charges.
- Diplomats are allowed to import 1 vehicle or motor cycle per shipment; additional vehicles or motorcycles will be subject to duties and taxes at the rate of 45% + value added tax (VAT) at 16%.
- Motor vehicles must be imported within 90 days after the last date of arrival of the shipper.
- A guaranty deposit can be requested by Customs of the value of the duties while waiting for confirmation of any exemption.
- Shipper must not have visited Kenya for a total of more than 90 days in the last 2 years prior to the last date of arrival in the Kenya.
- Only one duty-free car per returning resident in a lifetime is permitted.
- If the vehicle is older than 1 year, there is no tax provided that the vehicle is registered in the name of the person moving.
- Vehicles imported duty free are not transferrable for a period of 1 year.
- Taxes on vehicles are based on a percentage of the local value for a similar vehicle (approximately 55%) and the vehicle must not have a seating capacity of more than 13 people.
- All shippers must pay motor vehicle processing fees (currently USD 145 per motor vehicle).
- Vaccination Record (must include Rabies Certificate)
- Veterinary Health Certificate
- Original Shipper’s / Owner’s Passport
- Import Permit
- Documents are required prior to import (issued at point of origin).
- The animal’s rabies vaccination must be given within 1 year and 1 month prior to import.
- Import Permit and Rabies Certificate must be presented upon entry.
- The Import Permit takes approximately 30 days from the time of application to obtain.
- The fee per animal is KES 500.
- A duty of 25% and VAT of 16% are required upon arrival.
- Weapons, including firearms (a Firearm Certificate issued by the Kenyan Firearms Office is required)
- Wild flora and fauna (a Plant Import Permit is required)
- Birds and their products (a Sanitary Import Permit issued by the Director of Veterinary Services is required for the import of birds from countries affected by Bird Flu)
- The following items may qualify for free import with the limits indicated by persons 16 years and older:
- Cigarettes (200), cigars (50), tobacco (1/2 pound)
- Alcoholic beverages (1 bottle)
- Perfume (1 pint)
- Game trophies
- Counterfeit currency
- Gambling machines
- Pornographic or obscene literature (books, articles, videos, etc.)
- Animal traps
- Imitation firearms
- Alcohol and other spirits
- Precious metals and stones
Recommended: Contact the destination agent to ensure all requirements have been met prior to import, especially for differences regarding air / sea shipments.
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.