Importing Motor Vehicles
All vehicles must be thoroughly cleaned, both internally and externally before arrival in Australia. It is the importer's responsibility to ensure each consignment is clean and free of all quarantine risk material (QRM), including live insects, seeds, soil, mud, clay, animal faeces, animal material, plant material such as straw, twigs, leaves, roots, bark, food refuse and other debris prior to arrival in Australia.
AQIS inspects motor vehicles for cleanliness on arrival in Australia. In the case of break-bulk shipments, the inspection must occur within the wharf precinct. For containerised cargo, the inspection must occur at a Quarantine Approved Premises (QAP). Your customs broker/freight forwarder will have a list of AQIS approved premises. Either yourself or your agent must inform AQIS of your chosen QAP. Please note charges may apply for unpacking and storage at the QAP. Please contact the QAP to establish the exact cost of this function.
An AQIS officer will inspect all areas of the vehicle. If the vehicle is found to be contaminated, AQIS will direct it for cleaning at the importer's expense. The vehicle will then be re-inspected by AQIS. If the vehicle is found to be heavily contaminated it may be exported from Australia at the importer's expense.
You will need to contact the AQIS regional office in the port at which the vehicle is arriving to arrange an inspection. They can also provide you with more detailed information as they will be carrying out the inspection.
Please contact the relevant AQIS regional office for the current costs of quarantine services.
Be aware of the following points when importing used motor vehicles:
1. Your vehicle must be thoroughly clean from soil and road grime, plant matter and seeds. Important points to check are:
- wheels, wheel guards, mud guards
- spare tyre and boot
- engine bay—remove water from windshield reservoir and ensure your radiator is clean and free of debris in the cooling fins
- the underside of the vehicle must be clean
- above and around fuel tank
- inside chassis rails
- under seats
The vehicle must be vacuumed to be clean of soil, food, sand and gravel.
2. Additional information
- Contact the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service for information on custom duties. Phone 1300 363 263 or +61 2 6275 6666 (from outside Australia).
- Contact the Department of Infrastructure and Transport for information about permit/registration requirements. Phone 1800 815 272 or +61 2 6274 6013 (from outside Australia).
3. The regional AQIS office is where the Quarantine Entry will be lodged. If you choose to use a customs broker they will handle this.
4. After lodging a Quarantine Entry, an appointment to inspect the vehicle will need to be made. You or your broker may need to be present during the inspection.
5. The importer is responsible for all quarantine costs.
6. Please ensure the keys are provided as AQIS will inspect the internal compartments, engine bay and the boot of the vehicle.
AQIS maintains a public database—AQIS's Import Conditions Database (ICON)—that contains the conditions for importing goods into Australia. ICON is a simple and convenient way to access information about Australian import conditions for more than 20 000 plant, animal, microbial, mineral and human products.
Please see the ICON 'Machinery—Used passenger vehicles, used road vehicles including spare parts (non-agricultural)' import case details for conditions regarding the importation of used vehicles/motorcycles.
11 Oct 2010