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Q: Moving items from the US to South Africa ( Answered,   1 Comment )
Question  
Subject: Moving items from the US to South Africa
Category: Reference, Education and News > Consumer Information
Asked by: mimi99-ga
List Price: $50.00
Posted: 18 May 2006 19:01 PDT
Expires: 17 Jun 2006 19:01 PDT
Question ID: 730254
I need an advisor on moving to south africa from denver -- someone who
knows the ropes & all the legal ramifications/ custom regulations for
importing items from the US to SA.  The SA Embassy at the US has not
been helpful & it is difficult communicating only online w/ custom
brokers in SA.  Who can I contact?
Answer  
Subject: Re: Moving items from the US to South Africa
Answered By: hummer-ga on 19 May 2006 20:25 PDT
 
Hi mimi99,

Whether you are immigrating to South Africa or moving there
temporarily, you will be allowed to bring your personal belongings
duty free. The South African Revenue Service recommends hiring a
Clearing Agent to facilitate the clearance of your goods for you. I've
copied and pasted relevant sections of various website below, but
please click on the links for full details.

South African Revenue Service (SARS)
ENTERING THE REPUBLIC: GOODS OTHER THAN ACCOMPANIED PASSENGERS' BAGGAGE
"Documentary clearance is necessary before goods of a value of more
than R500,00 other than accompanied passengers' baggage can be
released from Customs control. An importer would be well advised to
appoint a Clearing Agent to act on his behalf at the place of entry in
South Africa.
Immigrants who import household furniture and effects and/or motor
vehicles in terms of the concessions as explained under heading
"Concessions", should furnish their Clearing Agent with a signed
declaration on Form DA304 (for household furniture and effects) and/or
Form DA304A (for motor vehicles). These declarations are issued by the
Controller of Customs and Excise, on request, but only after the
arrival in the Republic of the person concerned."
Contact Email: customs.qry.cc@sars.gov.za
http://www.southafricahouse.com/ce_ergapb.htm

CUSTOMS GUIDE - SOUTH AFRICA [commercial site but good guide]
"Excess Baggage Company has compiled this information sheet to help
you understand what happens when you ship your goods to South Africa
or Zimbabwe, and to inform you of procedures once your goods arrive.
The sheet describes how you can help with the smooth clearance of your
goods through Customs, so please try and take time to read the
information. Do call us or our agents in South Africa if you require
further clarification of any of the points outlined below - we are all
available to help you.
This information is provided without obligation and at the
individual's risk. We accept no responsibility for any inaccuracy of
whatever nature."
General
Loading & Transit
Freight Charges
Destination Charges
On Arrival
Customs Clearance
Duty & Customs Regulations
Shipments to Zimbabwe
Our Agents
http://www.excess-baggage.com/customs_guide_south_africa.php 	

South African Import Regulations [commercial site] 
2. Immigrants and Temporary Residence Permit holders
"At the time of departure for South Africa, Immigrants and Temporary
Residence Permit holders are also allowed to import their personal and
household effects into South Africa without the payment of import
duties and VAT (excluding alcoholic beverages and tobacco products).
An Inventory of the goods in the container and the Residence Permit
must be produced to Customs. Foreign students and contract workers
will for example also qualify for the concession as they are changing
their residence albeit temporary. These goods (excluding weapons,
ammunition and motor vehicles) do not require an Import Permit.
Customs clearance forms DA 304 and P.1.160 must be completed for the
household/personal effects. These formalities are normally completed
by your shipping company's clearing agent. All the above-mentioned
documents and permits should also be handed over to this person.
All household and personal effects must be brought into the country
within six months. After this period has elapsed special permission is
needed in order to make use of the concession. Such requests will only
be considered by Customs if the full reason for the long lapse in time
are provided. Requests of this nature should be directed to:
South African Revenue Service
Customs Commercial Services
Private Bag X923
Pretoria
0001
South Africa
Call Centre Tel: 0860 12 12 18
Note: If the Residence Permit is not yet available when the container
arrives in South Africa, a cash deposit of 50% will have to be paid
to cover the full import duties and taxes on the household effect.
These deposits are refundable on production of the Residence Permit.
See also:
Permanent Importation of Vehicles into South Africa
Contact us  	
  Ritztrade International
  No 30 Prestige Business Park
  Democracy Way,
  Milnerton 7447, Cape Town
  email: importation@ritztrade.com
  or use our online enquiry form
http://www.ritztrade.com/south-africa-cape-town-johannesburg/south-africa-further-services/import-regulations/import-regulations.php

Customs  Clearance [commercial site]
"For your goods to clear South African Customs, certain documents are
required. We would advise you to complete these and give them to us so
we can send them to our agent in advance of the shipment arriving, so
that there will be no delay in clearing the goods. To clear personal
or household effects we require a packing list or inventory, a
clearing mandate, form DA304 (* see note below) and form P.1.160.A
certified photocopy of your passport is also required, but please note
that this is only valid for clearance if copied after you have arrived
in South Africa when it will include your entry stamp. Copies of
passports given to us here in the country of origin (which naturally
will not have your SA entry details) will not be accepted for
clearance purposes. When you get to South Africa you should copy the
page with your personal details and all pages with stamps, have them
certified at a police station or post office, and send them to the
agent together with your immigration permit (if applicable) when you
receive your arrival notification. Alternatively if you wish, you can
visit your nearest Customs office with all your completed original
documents. This means you can personally answer any queries Customs
may have which the agent might not be able to answer for you.
Please note that failure to complete the necessary forms will cause
delay in Customs clearance. If your goods cannot be cleared due to
lack of required documents, they will be held in Customs bonded store
until they can be cleared. This will mean that you may be charged for
Customs bond storage while you complete the documents.
(*) Note: Form DA304 is not required if your shipment consists solely
of 'personal effects' (see earlier section), but we advise you to
complete it anyway. Our agent will then assess your packing list or
inventory to ascertain whether the form needs to be presented to
Customs or not.
We offer the following services with a commitment to quality:
	Bond and Duty Paid Warehousing
	Customs Clearing
	International Air / Sea Forwarding
	Container Packing / Unpacking
	Loading containers for export
	Marine Insurance
	Agoa Exports
http://www.freightman.com/services.htm

CUSTOMS CLEARANCE FORMS DA 304 and P.1.160 
http://www.ritztrade.com/south-africa-cape-town-johannesburg/south-africa-further-services/import-regulations/downloads/DA304.pdf

SARS
FIRST TIME IMMIGRANTS
"First time immigrants may import the following household and personal
effects without the payment of Customs duty or VAT, provided they are
the bona fide property of a natural person and members of his family,
imported for own use:
* Household furniture,
* Other household effects,
* Other removable effects,
* Equipment necessary for the exercise of the calling, trade or
profession of the person (tools of the trade).
The following items are excluded:
* Industrial, commercial and agricultural plant,
* Motor vehicles
* Alcoholic beverages and tobacco products
Conditions
This concession covers goods imported for the importer's own use only,
and such goods may not be sold or disposed of in any other way for at
least 6 months from the date of clearance
Documents Required
A signed declaration (form DA304) and form PI.160 which are obtainable
from the Controller of Customs & Excise at the port, together with the
immigration permit and a full inventory of the goods must be presented
when clearance is effected."
http://www.southafricahouse.com/ce_Ihpfti.htm

MOTOR VEHICLES: FIRST TIME IMMIGRANTS
http://www.southafricahouse.com/ce_mvfti.htm

PERSONS ON SECONDMENT TO SOUTH AFRICA
Persons who take up temporary residence in South Africa and have the
necessary permit issued by the Department of Home Affairs (e.g. work
permit), may import the following items into South Africa free of
Customs duty and VAT provided they are the bona fide proeprty of a
natural person and members of his family, imported for own use.
* Household furniture,
* Other household effects,
* Other removable effects,
* Equipment necessary for the exercise of the calling, trade or
profession of the person (tools of the trade).
The following items are excluded:
* Industrial, commercial and agricultural plant,
* Motor vehicles
* Alcoholic beverages and tobacco products
Conditions
This concession covers goods imported for the importer's own use only,
and such goods may not be sold or disposed of in any other way for at
least 6 months from the date of clearance
Documents required
A signed declaration (form DA304) and form PI.160 which are obtainable
from the Controller of Customs and Excise at the port of entry
passport with relevant work permit and a full inventory of the goods
must be presented when clearance of the goods is effected.
http://www.southafricahouse.com/ce_Ihppssa.htm

TEMPORARY ADMISSION OF MOTOR VEHICLES & PERSONS TAKING UP TEMPORARY
RESIDENCE IN THE REPUBLIC
http://www.southafricahouse.com/ce_mvtamv.htm

CUSTOMS CONTACT NUMBERS AND OPERATIONAL HOURS
http://www.sars.gov.za/Contact_Us/Customs_contact_list.pdf

An Overview of South African Customs Procedures 
http://www.sars.gov.za//ce/Brochures/SC-CF-02%20-%20An%20Overview%20of%20South%20African%20Customs%20Procedures%20-%20Brochure%20-%202004.pdf

"In South Africa, most agents of repute are members of regional
associations which are affiliated to the South African Association of
Freight Forwarders SAAFF. These associations have a list of fees for
the functions performed by members."
http://www.mbendi.co.za/import/sa/freightfwd_role.htm

South African Association of Freight Forwarders (FIATA)
"The main concern of the South African Association of Freight
Forwarders is to augment the skills of its Members thus ensuring their
ability to offer a consistently high level of service to their
Clients.
It aims to provide a quality, accessible service to its Members; to
maintain strong links with Government, parastatals and other
institutions that influence the industry and to promote the industry
in the wider environment.
In view of the international character of the Freight Forwarder a
close relationship with other freight forwarding associations is of
great importance. To this end SAAFF is a founder member of the
Federation of Clearing and Forwarding Associations of Southern Africa
and is an active participant in the affairs of the International
Federation of Forwarding Associations."
Contact email: saaff@saaff.org.za
http://www.saaff.org.za/

Customs Services
"We invite you to submit the appropriate estimate request or, if you
prefer, you may contact Chris Scott or Peter Scott directly by E mail
or by telephone."
http://www.tradepage.co.za/customs/

COMMON QUESTIONS TO SOUTH AFRICAN REVENUE SERVICES
(Duty & Customs Regulations)
http://web.singnet.com.sg/~satrade2/custom.htm


Additional Links of Interest:

"Arriving in South Africa: To enter the country, South African law
requires that you have at least two blank pages in your passport.
Without the blank pages, you will not be permitted to go through
immigration and will be forced to leave on the next available flight.
For up to date information on traveling overseas go to
http://travel.state.gov or see the following links to U.S. State
Department web sites."
http://usembassy.state.gov/pretoria/wwwhacs3.html

International Trade Administration Commission of South Africa (ITAC)
Can I do my own clearing or must a clearing/shipping agent be appointed?
"Importers are allowed to conduct their own clearing. The process
however involves various customs and harbor/airport formalities. As
such, it is proposed that you also consult the SARS at Tel +27 (0) 12
422 4000 and/or the South African Association of Freight Forwarders at
Tel +27 (0) 11 728 7240 regarding guidance in this regard."
http://www.itac.org.za/import_faq.htm

Links
http://www.southafrica-newyork.net/consulate/links.htm 

Goods Imported as Accompanied Passengers' Baggage
http://www.southafrica-newyork.net/consulate/customs2.htm#baggage

I hope I've been able to lead you in the right direction. If you have
any questions, please post a clarification request and wait for me to
respond before closing/rating my answer.

Thank you,
hummer

Some of the Google search terms used:
south african revenue service
South African Association of Freight Forwarders
south african customs clearance
south african clearing agents
moving to south africa household goods clearance
South African Import Regulations

Request for Answer Clarification by mimi99-ga on 29 May 2006 18:53 PDT
Hello -- 
Although I appreciate your long list of detailed weblinks, what I am
looking for is an actual person who knows the ropes regarding moving
items when immigrating from the US to SA.  I am looking for a name &
number of someone with experience.  I suspect that you do not have a
contact of that nature -- is that correct?
thank you,
Mimi

Clarification of Answer by hummer-ga on 30 May 2006 07:16 PDT
Hi Mimi,

I'm sorry to hear that you are unhappy with my research. No, I do not
have personal experience regarding moving to South Africa, but if that
is your only request, i.e., to talk to someone who has moved there,
then this is not the correct venue for you. Even if someone happened
to have moved to South Africa and posted here, GA strictly forbids
exchanging contact information.  GA is a group of researchers who find
answers to often difficult questions, sort of like a reference
librarian in a library. Although I have never moved to South Africa,
my interests and expertise are in any immigration, moving, shipping,
border customs, import/export, etc., issues and I was happy to tackle
your question. I remember that I worked hours (literally) on your
question, I even spoke to someone about it, and I was particularly
happy when I finally found the customs clearance forms DA 304 and
P.1.160.

* "...what I am looking for is an actual person who knows the ropes
regarding moving items when immigrating from the US to SA."
* "I am looking for a name & number of someone with experience." 
* "I suspect that you do not have a contact of that nature -- is that correct?"
* "Moving items from the US to South Africa" 
* "I need an advisor on moving to south africa from denver -- someone who
knows the ropes & all the legal ramifications/ custom regulations for
importing items from the US to SA."  
* "The SA Embassy at the US has not been helpful & 
* it is difficult communicating only online w/ custom brokers in SA."  
* "Who can I contact?"

I've given you the customs regulations for importing your goods into
SA, the recommendation by the South African Revenue Service (SARS) to
hire a "Clearing Agent", and the contact info for three clearing
agents. You could contact SARS (customs.qry.cc@sars.gov.za) and ask if
they would provide a list of clearing agents if you need more.

CUSTOMS GUIDE - SOUTH AFRICA 
"The sheet describes how you can help with the smooth clearance of
your goods through Customs, so please try and take time to read the
information. Do call us or our agents in South Africa if you require
further clarification of any of the points outlined below - we are all
available to help you."
USA Toll Free  1800 260 8098
http://www.excess-baggage.com/customs_guide_south_africa.php 	

Ritztrade International
No 30 Prestige Business Park
Democracy Way,
Milnerton 7447, Cape Town
email: importation@ritztrade.com
or use our online enquiry form
http://www.ritztrade.com/south-africa-cape-town-johannesburg/south-africa-further-services/import-regulations/import-regulations.php

Customs  Clearance 
We offer the following services with a commitment to quality:
* Customs Clearing
Contact us
tel: +27 (0)21 551 4940
fax: +27 (0)21 551 4949
email : info@freightman.com
Physical Address:
18 Railway Rd
Montague Gardens
Cape Town
South Africa
http://www.freightman.com/services.htm

SARS CUSTOMS CONTACT NUMBERS AND OPERATIONAL HOURS
http://www.sars.gov.za/Contact_Us/Customs_contact_list.pdf

An Overview of South African Customs Procedures 
http://www.sars.gov.za//ce/Brochures/SC-CF-02%20-%20An%20Overview%20of%20South%20African%20Customs%20Procedures%20-%20Brochure%20-%202004.pdf

CUSTOMS CLEARANCE FORMS DA 304 and P.1.160 
http://www.ritztrade.com/south-africa-cape-town-johannesburg/south-africa-further-services/import-regulations/downloads/DA304.pdf



Perhaps a more appropriate venue for you would be to post on SA
discussion forums like these, you may be able to hook up with someone
that way:

"Planning on moving to South Africa " 
http://www.africaguide.com/forum/safrica/298.html

SouthAfrica.com Discussion Forum > Travel & Tourism > Moving
http://www.southafrica.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?s=cd07f9306f6f98d9d9c4ba80b18d00a2&f=17

Messages in South Africa Travel 
http://www.africaguide.com/cgi-bin/forum/dcboard.cgi?forum=safrica&az=list

Forums > > Africa > > South Africa
http://www.expatfocus.com/expatriate-forums-south-africa

South Africa - an expatriate guide
http://www.expatfocus.com/expatriate-south-africa

I hope that helps! 
Sincerely,
hummer
Comments  
Subject: Re: Moving items from the US to South Africa
From: jh963-ga on 19 May 2006 14:25 PDT
 
I don't know if they go to South Africa, but you might try U Pak We Ship at

www.upakweship.com

When I was considering moving to New Zealand, they were recommended to me.

J.

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