If your are relocating to another country, letting go of your long-traveled South African-bought car can be a difficult decision. However, a decision for many rational reasons. This may include expensive pricing of cars in the international automotive market; you are not ready to go of your South African dream car; or you just do not want to sell your car and buy a new car due to the unnecessary hassle of the car selling process.

Due to the criminal and safety risks that came with South African motor vehicle exportation, taking effect in 1999, motor vehicle must now go through police clearance, as indicated and required by the South African Regional Police Chiefs Cooperation Organisation (SARPCCO). South African car owners who intend to export their car, are therefore required to obtain a Police Clearance Certificate before exporting a car from SARPCCO countries – Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Tanzania, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

You might be thinking ‘what an unnecessary hassle’. But in actual fact, the clearance certificate is your safety net when it comes to proving that your car is not a stolen and illegally-registered vehicle. It is therefore issued by a qualified SAPS officer appointed by the clearance officer.

Just like import control, the role of export control is to regulate health, environmental, security, safety and technical standards, emitted by domestic laws and International Agreement. Export control measures are restricted to people under the appropriate World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreements.

When exporting a car outside of South Africa, enforcement and inspections are conducted to ensure that the registered car owners have complied with the conditions stated in their permits to export, Regulation provisions and to detect contraventions of the Act. The advantaged of export permits for export control is that it helps regulate the outflow of strategically-natured goods, smuggled goods or stolen goods.

Export guidelines and policies have been compiled by the International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC). The export ‘help guide’ provides people with export control measures. In terms of the ITAC Act, if you are planning to export your car, you need to apply for an Export Permit for Motor Vehicles. The processing time is generally 2 working days and supporting documents may be required.

So, what are the steps to go about exporting a car outside of South African territory?

Step 1: Obtain SARPCCO Vehicle Clearance Certificate at your nearest clearance office, by getting your vehicle checked by the clearance office, retrieve the vehicle’s registration certificate and have your ID and passport at hand. Vehicle clearance certificates can be issued during working hours and is valid for 90-days from the issue date.

Step 2: Apply for an Export Permit for Motor Vehicles from ITAC.

Step 3: Submit the relevant documents required by Customs and Excise, from the Department of Transport, and from the Department of Trade and Industry.

Combat illegal trafficking and go about exporting your car outside of South Africa, the right way.

The above information, as retrieved from gov.za and ITAC, is simply a guide and does not change any laws, rules and regulations, as stipulated in the 2002 International Trade Administration Act, 1964 Customs and Excise Act, 2000 Promotion to Administrative Justice Act, 2000 Promotion to Access to Information Act; and as stipulated by South African Bureau of Standards and South African Revenue Service.

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