Egypt eases rules for tax-free car import programme

Habiba Hamdy , Tuesday 27 Dec 2022

Egyptian expats wishing to take advantage of a government initiative to import cars to Egypt free of custom duties and taxes are now no longer required to have deposits covered for three months in their bank accounts before starting the process, Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait said.



Minister Maait said on Tuesday that the cancelled requirement will instead be replaced with a bank statement showing a history of deposit, withdrawal and transfer transactions six months before the import date.

He also added that applicants will no longer be required to have their official required documents, such as their residence papers, bank account statements and their vehicle documents, authenticated at Egyptian embassies in their respective countries.

The Egyptian government ratified in October Law 161/2022 allowing Egyptians residing abroad to import tax-free one private car per person for a period of four months.

The law obligates applicants to invest the value of saved customs in foreign currency in an interest-free certificate of deposit (CD).

The amount is to be reimbursed in Egyptian pounds at the end of the time period according to the exchange rate at the time of reimbursement.

The finance minister said that Egypt hopes to bring in $2.5 billion from this initiative, noting that there are 14 million Egyptians living abroad. Citizens with dual citizenship may also apply.

Egypt launched the free Egyptians Expats Cars application the iOS App store and Android App store in November to allow Egyptian expats to start the import process.

In the first two weeks, 30,000 expatriates registered on the app, Maait announced, saying this showed that demand for cars is on the rise.

Cars will be evaluated at basic, medium and high models to determine their custom and tax value at the request of applicants to determine the value of cash transfer, said Maait. Also, the application will allow Egyptians abroad to purchase cars in duty free zones in Egypt provided that the transfer of money comes from outside of the country.

The customs clearance service for Egyptian cars abroad will not cost more than 3,000 Egyptian pounds, said head of the Egyptian Customs Authority Al-Shahat Ghatouri, adding that an operations room has been formed to ensure a quick process through customs. 

Ratifications will go electronically into effect on the app by Thursday at the latest, the finance minister confirmed.

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