Do I need an import export license header image

Not sure if you need an import export license?

We’ve made the SARS conditions under which you need an import export license registration easy to understand with this decision making chart.

Simply start at the top and follow the Yes or No paths to determine whether you need an import export license, as well as the registration type appropriate to your circumstances.

Need a closer look? Click here to download a PDF version of the chart.

Do I need an import export license

What is an import export license for a business?

A unique import and export code (number) issued by Customs. This code is linked to a profile with SARS Customs which belongs to a CIPC registered company, CC, Trust or other legal entity besides a person. Should the entity change hands, change name, change location, or change its bank details, the import export license is still valid. Changes in these details must however be reported to SARS Customs within 7 days by means of an amendment.

All commercial invoices relating to imports and exports under this registration must be issued by, or made out to, the registered entity. Funds related to imports and exports under this registration must be paid and/or received via a bank account belonging to the entity.

What is an import export license for an individual?

A unique import and export code (number) issued by Customs. This code is linked to a profile with SARS Customs which belongs to a person (according to their ID number). Should the individual’s name, address or bank details change, updated information must be submitted to SARS Customs within 7 days by means of an amendment. The registration is not transferable to another person. In the event that the individual passes away, their import export license becomes invalid.

All commercial invoices relating to imports and exports under this registration must be issued by, or made out to, the individual. Funds related to imports and exports under this registration must be paid and/or received via a bank account belonging to the individual.

What is a nominated agent?

Should a foreign entity (individual or business) want to import or export to/from South Africa in their own name, that entity needs to be registered with South African Customs and use their own import export registration number. As part of the registration process all foreign entities are legally required to appoint a nominated agent that is located in South Africa to represent the foreign entity at Customs as and when required. The agent is liable for the fulfilment of all obligations imposed on the foreign import export license holder, should the foreign entity default on any payments or obligations .

The nominated agent must have an existing import export license and must be registered as an agent in order to represent the foreign entity at Customs.

Still not sure what you need to get your import export venture started? Simply get in touch and speak to our friendly and knowledgeable consultants. We’re ready to answer your questions and get you ready for international trade.