Import regulations for used and new cars from Japan to Kenya


Brand New or used cars imported to Kenya are shipped to the maritime port of Mombasa by either RORO or container.

Age Restriction

When importing a used vehicle to Kenya, one must consider that the vehicle should be not older than 8 years. The manufacture date should be closest to 8 years old to the month of manufacture upon arrival in Mombasa for the lowest duties. * Although the law still states 8 years, some importers have been told 7 years by customs. Please confirm with your local customs agent prior to purchase, thank you.
* Although the law still states 8 years, some importers have been told 7 years by customs. Please confirm with your local customs agent prior to purchase, thank you.

Road Worthiness Inspection
Used vehicles imported to Kenya must undergo a “Road Worthiness Inspection”. Road Worthiness Inspection is required in the case of all imports of used cars from Japan to Kenya.

QIS is a strict vehicle safety inspection test. It ensures that the vehicle being sent has genuine mileage, has no damage to the chassis, all lights are working, no major rust, has tyres that are safe enough to drive with, has good working brakes and the constant velocity joints are not worn out.

All used cars exported to Kenya by Japan Car Direct pass the QIS Inspection and have a QIS certificate.

Import Taxation in Kenya
Please see: https://www.kra.go.ke/individual/calculate-tax/calculating-tax/car-import-duty to calculate the Kenya side duty.

•  The calculation is based on the Current Retail Selling Price (CRSP) where the subject model is still in production, and if the subject vehicle model is not in production the CRSP that applies is the last retail selling price or how much it was costing before non-production. KRA have a well-organized vehicle prices data base for all vehicles that they use and provide online for reference (Please see current CRSP rates here: kra.customs-services).
•  Depending on the age of the subject vehicle you obtain the depreciation Rate again from their set templates.
•  The Import Duty, Excise Duty, VAT and IDF Fee are set, and the Total Tax (Duty) is obtained. However there is an additional vehicle Registration cost that needs to be paid to KRA before the vehicle can leave the CFS. All vehicles must have a registration a number, and insurance coverage before they are allowed to leave the CFS.
•  Once the Vehicle is in the Port of Mombasa, they may give you Free storage for a number of days depending on the CFS, after which the vehicle begins to attract charges if it exceeds the free storage days.
•  You also have to pay for clearing charges which are approximately Ksh 40,00 to Ksh 50,000 per vehicle.

Securing Importation

•  The importer to inquire the duty in comparison to CC, Year Model and other modalities.
•  The motor vehicle is identified through internet such as Kobe, Papera, IBC JAPAN, Autorec etc.
•  Currency commonly used USD, Japanese YEN.
•  The Pro-forma details are sent through your email.
•  The model currently for importation allowed by Kenyan law for used vehicles is 2007.
•  Make negotiations i.e discounts.
•  Japan shall confirm on the negotiation on FOB USD values or on the total CIF USD Mombasa.
•  Importer will make his payment to his Japan car sell through account given on the Pro-forma invoice or the agent authorized such as TRADE CAR VIEW for safe custody of car payment but will commission to make his down payment through our reputable local banks.
•  The importer to have the receipt for remittances and thereafter email it to his agent in Japan.
•  Japan trader shall confirm payment against the stock number and thereafter inspection shall be done.
•  It will take an average of 2 weeks for inspection to be done and one month for delivery of the Documents on the Importation, Bill of Lading, Japan Log Book Original, Translated Logbook, Japan Inspection Report and Final invoice

Kenya Customs procedures Shipping lines
Documents required:

•  3 original B/L – First Original for shipping line signed by the owner
•  Japan Logbook
•  QIS Report
•  Invoice – value to be compared to CRSP guideline
•  PIN copy
•  ID copy
•  IDF fees advance payment of Kshs 5000 to KRA
•  Manifest reference inquiry from shipping lines
•  Your agent to declare the cargo to KRA –Tradex System- Duty paid
•  The cargo to be verified with KRA to satisfaction on values and vehicles details
•  The CFS/ Port charges secured
•  4 days free – for clearance
•  Port charges / CFS-stations charges payment
•  The car cleared
•  Other payments related for clearance:
•  Agent Agencies
•  Fuel to destination
•  Driver option

KRA Duty Formulation

•  Customs Value = CIF USD Msa x Exchange rate
•  Duty = CV x Duty Rate of 25%
•  Excise Value = CV +Import payable
•  EX/D/P = Ex/V x EX/R of 20%
•  Vat/V = EX/Duty + EX/Value
•  VAT = V/V x VAT rate 16%
•  RDL = CV x 1.5% rate
•  IDF = 2.25% of CV
•  Registration as per attached chart-varies in engine capacities
•  Trade Levy varied as per volume CBM