How to Import a Car to Japan: Import Clearance Procedures for Vehicles

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    1109 Import Clearance Procedures for Vehicles (FAQ)
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    When a vehicle bought in a foreign country arrives in Japan, an arrival notice is issued by a shipping company, etc. The consignee should confirm the storage place of the vehicle and conduct clearance procedures at the customs, in general, office holding jurisdiction over the storage area.

    Clearance procedures can be made either by an individual or by a customs broker.

    Documents required for the clearance procedures include import (duty payment) declaration form, invoice, freight account of cargo, statement of premium due, and bill of lading.

    A general import declaration is required for anyone intending to import a vehicle which was driven in a foreign country. If a vehicle is imported as a part of household goods to be moved, it may be exempt from tax under certain conditions. This requires submission of an import declaration form, necessary documents to be declared, passport(s) (of the applicant and accompanying family members), three Application Forms for Duty-free Importation of Household Goods including Vehicles, one Declaration of Accompanied and Unaccompanied Goods (the ones approved by the customs when entering Japan), and a document that certifies the vehicle has been driven, such as a vehicle registration in a foreign country. (However, if the said vehicle is transferred to a third party within two years of the date of import permit, it is subject to duty.)

    It is necessary to register an imported vehicle at the Land Transportation Authority to drive the vehicle in Japan. Please contact the nearest Land Transportation Authority for details, including necessary documents for vehicle registration.

    Please refer to the Code 7306 “Import/Export Declaration Procedures (Foreign Carnet) by Passenger Vehicle Declaration (Carnet) for the procedures using Passenger Vehicle Declaration (Carnet).”

    For consultations on customs procedures, please contact the nearest Customs Counselor.

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