An import export license is officially required when:
- The total imported/exported cargo is R50 000 or more in one calendar year; or
- There are more than 3 imports/exports in one calendar year.
- You are importing for resale or business purposes and not for your own personal use.
Practically, however, when the value of imported or exported goods is above R10 000, or you have imported or exported more than three times, customs may ask for a license.
You also require a customs license if you want to make or receive an international payment for imported or exported goods through your bank (this is not necessary if you use your credit card, but credit card transactions typically involve very high forex costs).