Bringing your own car
Import duties on cars and motorcycles are very high in Singapore, so be prepared to pay through your nose to bring your vehicle in. However, if you are bent on bringing along your vehicle, we recommend using A-1 Auto Transport to help out. .
The following information is courtesy of the Land Transport Authority (LTA). Visit their website for more information.
- You may bring your own vehicle to Singapore only if it is less than 3 years old. The age of a used vehicle is reckoned from the date of its first registration in a foreign country.
- A surcharge of $10,000 is payable for each imported used car registered in Singapore.
- Your vehicle must pass a mechanical inspection at the LTA before it can be registered. The requirements are:
- All safety glass fitted must have not less than 70% light transmittance and must not contain any metallic oxide coating.
- Exhaust emmission standards as specified by either the European Directive 91/441/EEC or Article 31 of the Japanese Safety Regulation. A certificate of compliance is required.
- Only right-hand drive vehicles in Singapore.
- Vehicle must be able to use unleaded petrol.
- Vehicle must be fitted with approved front and rear safety belts.
- Vehicle must have asbestos-free brake and clutch lining.
- Air-conditioning units must be CFC-free.
If your vehicle meets all these requirements and you are still convinced you want to import it into Singapore, here's what you must do:
- If the car you are importing is manufactured in one of the European Community countries, obtain the EEC Certificate of Conformity issued by the manufacturer for the car from the manufacturer or agent.
- If the car is manufactured in Japan, obtain the Completion Inspection Certificate issued by the manufacturer for the car from the manufacturer or agent
- Alternatively, the car can be tested overseas at any recognised vehicle testing laboratory for a Certificate of Compliance with Exhaust Emission Standards together with a Test Report and a Safety Glass Certificate.
- Obtain proof that the car is new or has never been registered for use (eg manufacturer's invoice, V308 Registration Document issued by the Department of Transportation, London, etc). For a used car, the vehicle registration document issued by the foreign authority is required.
- Technical specifications/catalogue issued by the manufacturer if the car is a new make or model previously not imported into Singapore (eg technical catalogue).
- Declaration form for asbestos-free brake and clutch lining.
- Arrange for shipment of the car to Singapore. Arrange with a shipping agent to obtain an Inward Cargo Clearance Permit. Your agent will have to submit a joint application to the Trade Development Board (TDB) and the Customs & Excise Department (CED) using the Tradenet System.
- The CED will assess the Open Market Value (OMV) of your car and customs duty will be levied at 41 per cent of the OMV.
Still with us? Good, you're already half way there. The next step is to register your car, although that can be done on your behalf by a car agent.
- Submit items (1) through (6) listed in the preceeding section for verification at the New Registration Section, LTA, 10 Sin Ming Drive, Singapore 575701. The LTA will then notify you to send your car for inspection.
- Get a Certificate of Entitlement (COE) and obtain insurance coverage for your.
- Submit vehicle particulars at any computer service terminal at the Singapore Network Services (SNS) Service Centre, Bugis Junction and collect your Car Registration Application Form.
- At the New Registration Section of the LTA, submit the following:
- Car Registration Application Form
- COE (issued by LTA as Temporary Certificate of Entitlement)
- Original passport or a Certified true copy of the Company Registration Certificate (if the car is to be registered under a company's name)
- Original insurance cover note or certificate of insurance
- Notification of PARF benefit / COE rebate (if any)
- Successful bidding letter for Vehicle Registration Number (if any)
- In one cheque made payable to the Land Transport Authority, pay the registration fee of $1,000 for private registration and $5,000 for company registration. There is an Additional Registration Fee (ARF) of 150% of the car's OMV.
- Collect the following from the New Registration Section at LTA upon registration:
- Registration Card / Log Card
- Road Tax disc
- Insurance Cover Note or Certificate of Insurance
Congratulations! After all that (phew!) you are now ready to hit the roads.
Here you can read an account povided by one of our readers.
Bringing your own motorcycle
The regulations and procedures for importing a motorcycle are about the same as those for bringing in a car. The significant differences are:
- The customs duty is levied at 12% of the OMV instead of 41%
- All motorcycles must comply with the exhaust emission standard specified in the United States Code of Federal Regulations (40 CFR 86.410-80). Note that testing of the exhaust emission is not available in Singapore.
- ARF is computed at 15% of the OMV
De-registering your car
If you wish to scrap or export your vehicle, apply to the LTA with the following documents:
- Application form to de-register a vehicle, duly completed
- Vehicle registration book/card
- Scrap Certificate from Natsteel Ltd, export documents or foreign registration documents
- Original COE, if applicable
- Road tax disc
Owners of de-registered vehicles are required to submit documentary proof of the vehicle's disposal to the LTA. Once de-registered, a vehicle cannot be re-registered in Singapore. It is an offence for anyone to keep or use a de-registered vehicle. If you de-register a private car before it reaches 10 years, you may apply for the PARF benefit. If there is still a valid COE in force for your vehicle, you may apply for a COE rebate.
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