It is the customs regime whereby goods are placed in free circulation and home use with partial or total relief from duties and taxes, notwithstanding their tariff classification, provided they are imported in Cyprus under certain conditions and for specific purposes. A legal provision specifying a relief is a prerequisite for granting it.

Reliefs are granted for a number of goods for various reasons. This part refers only to reliefs on private motor vehicles which are of interest to the public, when they are imported from countries outside the European Union (EU), usually called third countries.

If you are resident in a third country and you have decided to transfer your normal residence to Cyprus, under certain conditions you are entitled to transfer your personal property without having to pay import and excise duties and VAT. You will find all the information in the Guide to Customs Procedures titled “Transfer of normal residence”.

If part of your personal property is a motor vehicle, so that you may not to be deprived of your vehicle until you make an application for relief and receive an answer, you may be allowed to drive it temporarily under Form C.104O.

You may submit your application for relief to any Customs Office or to Customs Headquarters. If you get a positive answer, the procedure is not terminated there. You will have to complete form SAD. If you cannot complete it on your own, you may use the services of a clearing agent. You may produce your SAD at any Regional Customs Office, accompanied by Form C.104O, which will be kept by Customs. You will have to pay no import and excise duties and VAT.

Customs will issue Form C72A and a copy will be give to you. The vehicle must be then produced, together with Form C72A and other documents relating to your vehicle, to the Inland Transport Department for inspection and registration purposes.

If you get a negative answer from Customs because you do not meet the criteria for being granted a relief for the vehicle, you have the following options:

  • to pay the import and excise duties and VAT;
  • to place it in a customs warehouse;
  • to send it to another member state of the EU; or
  • to export it to a third country.

Relief on motor vehicle has been abolished according to Decree no. 529/2011, which was published in the OJ of the Republic of Cyprus no. 4538 on 23/12/2011.

Persons concerned may claim relief for their personal motor vehicle within the “Transfer of normal residence scheme” (see paragraph 2).

Relief on motor vehicle has been abolished according to Decree no. 529/2011, which was published in the OJ of the Republic of Cyprus no. 4538 on 23/12/2011.

Persons concerned may claim relief for their personal motor vehicle within the “Transfer of normal residence scheme” (see paragraph 2).

Sub-section 14 of item P of the Schedule to the Customs and Excise Duties (Reliefs on Import of Goods) Regulations of 2004, P.I.380/2004.

Under the conditions laid down below, you are entitled to relief from excise duty if you are a citizen of the Republic with four or more dependant children and you have not received any subsidy from the State for the purchase of vehicle.

A child is considered dependent if that child is:

  • below the age of 18;
  • over 18 years old and is a student of secondary or tertiary education in Cyprus or abroad;
  • over 18 years old and is in the National Guard doing his service;
  • of any age and unmarried and invalid and who has not exercised his/her right to apply for a duty-free vehicle or has not been given financial assistance by the State to purchase a vehicle.

You are entitled to apply for relief from excise duty on new or used passenger motor vehicles, which can transport from eleven to twelve persons including the driver. Instead of claiming relief however, you may apply to the Ministry of Finance for a special subsidy for the purchase of motor vehicle.

Relief is granted for one vehicle only, to be driven solely by the entitled person. The replacement of one excise free vehicle with another excise free vehicle is not allowed.

Relief is granted on a claim for relief made by you personally (there is no specific form). The claim must be submitted to the Relief Section of Customs Headquarters in Nicosia and be accompanied by the following evidence:

  • marriage certificate;
  • your children’s birth certificates;
  • documentary evidence for dependant children over 18 years old;
  • “Association of Families of over three children” membership card;
  • Cypriot driving licence.

If you get a positive answer, the procedure is not terminated there. You will have to complete form SAD. If you cannot complete it on your own, you may use the services of a clearing agent. You may produce your SAD at any Regional Customs Office. Customs will issue Form C72A and a copy will be give to you. The vehicle must be then produced, together with Form C72A and other documents relating to your vehicle, to the Inland Transport Department for inspection and registration purposes.

You shall not sell, lend, pledge, rent, export, transfer or dispose off it otherwise without the prior approval of the Director of Customs.

If you decide to dispose off the vehicle on which relief was granted you will be required to pay excise duty in accordance with Regulation 12 of the Public Instrument 380/2004. For payment of excise duties, please see relevant page.

Any infringement of the aforesaid conditions constitutes an unlawful act and carries severe penalties.

For more information, you may write to the following address:

The Director,
Department of Customs and Excise
Corner M. Karaoli and Gr. Afxentiou, Nicosia
The postal address is: 
Director of Customs, 
Customs Headquarters, 
1440, Nicosia.
Fax no 22302031 
E-mail; headquarters@customs.mof.gov.cy

For oral inquiries you may call any of the following telephone numbers of the Relief Section at Customs Headquarters: 22601657 and 22601658.

As from 9th September 2013 the Excise Duties Law 91(I)/2004 is amended in respect of the excise duties charged on motor vehicles for the transport of persons of TH 870321 - 870390 as well as on car derived vans of TH 8704.

It should be noted that for such motor vehicles that up to the 9.9.2013 were already transferred or imported in Cyprus but have not yet been released for free circulation and/or consumption, or were delivered with relief from excise duty under any law, or the excise duty was refunded, or were delivered free of excise duty for temporary use, the amount of excise duty will be charged on the lower amount calculated according to the previous Law 91(I)/2004 up to (No. 3) of 2013 or the new amending law (No. 4) no. 110(I)/2013.

The same treatment shall enjoy motor vehicles that have been shipped on a vessel destined for any legitimate port of Cyprus, up to the 9th September 2013.

All motor vehicles, when imported to Cyprus from a country outside the EU, either brand new or used, are subject to import duty and V.A.T..

Over and above, the following categories of motor vehicles, if imported to Cyprus from a country outside the EU, either brand new or used, are also subject to excise duties in accordance to national legislation, and in particular, ANNEX 4 to the Excise Duties Law No.91(I)/2004:

  • Saloon type vehicles, such as sedan, cabrio, estate, hatchback, coupe, etc;
  • Jeep-type off-road vehicles (4Χ4);
  • Vehicles with two rows of seats, known as double cabin cars (of Tariff Heading – TH 8704) with Gross Vehicle Weight not exceeding 3,5 tonnes;
  • Vans (TH 8704) having a gross weight not exceeding 2032 kg and a net cargo volume not exceeding 2 cubic meters;
  • Motorcycles (TH 8711) (Note: for motorcycles with an engine capacity not exceeding 600 cc., no excise duty is chargeable)
 

Vehicles in the following categories are subject to 15% ad valorem excise duty:

  • “go kart” type motor vehicles, used only in closed and/or confined spaces, for entertainment purposes.
  • amphibious motor vehicles, with a gross weight not exceeding 1000 kg, with three rows of wheels and all-wheel-drive, which are used for recreational or commercial purposes and which can carry two to four persons.
  • "hovercraft" type motor vehicles that are designed to run both on water and soil.
  • Mobile campers of CN 8703
  • Old vehicles as defined in the Motor Vehicle and Traffic Law of 1972 as amended; and
  • 4-wheel vehicles, which have the appearance of a motorcycle and cannot be not registered for circulation on public roads.

Vehicles not included in the above categories, such as trucks (pick-ups), buses, vehicles carrying more than nine persons including the driver, vans other than the above, passenger vehicles powered by an electric motor, etc., are not subject to excise duty.

If you are importing such a vehicle, you must pay the duties and taxes it is subject to, so that you may be allowed to take possession of it, unless you place it in a customs warehouse, import it temporarily or re-export it. 

In order to pay the duties and taxes, you will have to complete an SAD form. If you cannot complete it on your own, you may employ the services of a customs clearing agent. In addition to the SAD you will have to produce to Customs the evidence required for the calculation of the vehicle’s customs value, i.e. the purchase price plus freight charges and insurance (if any) up to the port or airport of the Republic. For this purpose you are requested to produce the purchase invoice, bill of lading or airwaybill, or receipt for payment of the freight charges and insurance policy (if you have insured it). In addition you have to produce evidence of the vehicle’s engine capacity, if it is not shown on the invoice.

The import duty on goods imported from third countries is provided uniformly by TARIC, i.e. the electronic tariff of the European Union in all member states in the following address: http://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/dds2/taric/taric_consultation.jsp?Lang=en

In all the abovementioned cases V.A.T., at a rate of 19%, is charged in addition to the import duty and excise duty. V.A.T. is calculated as follows: (purchase price + transportation costs + insurance + import duty + excise duty) X 19%.

After the payment of relevant duties and taxes the vehicle must be registered before it can be licensed for road tax purposes.

According to the existing Motor Vehicle and Road Traffic Legislation, a private motor vehicle can be registered in Cyprus provided its age prior to its importation is less than five years old, this counted from the date of its first registration.

For more information concerning registration and other provisions on this issue you are advised to contact with the Road Transport Department, as the competent authority, at the following address: roadtransport@rtd.mcw.gov.cy

On payment of the duties and taxes, Customs will issue to you the Form C.72A which you must produce to the Inland Transport Department with the other relevant documents for the inspection and registration of the vehicle.

For more information, you may write to the Director of the Department of Customs and Excise, at the following address:

Customs Headquarters, 
1440, Nicosia.
Fax no: 22302031 
E-mail: headquarters@customs.mof.gov.cy

For oral inquiries you may call any of the following telephone numbers of the Valuation section at Customs Headquarters: 22601746, 22601748 or 22601650.

It is the customs procedure whereby you are allowed to import your vehicle from a third country, in order to use it temporarily during your stay in Cyprus and then re-export it without paying any customs duty, excise duty or VAT in Cyprus.

You will find all the information in the Guide to Customs Procedures titled “Temporary Importation of private motor vehicles”.

You are entitled to bring a private motor vehicle in Cyprus without having to pay excise duty or VAT under the following conditions:

  • you are the owner or you have the written authority of the owner;
  • your normal residence is in another member state;
  • you are bringing it for your private use only;
  • you intend to use it during your stay in Cyprus for a period of time not exceeding six months, consecutive or not, per year.

“Normal residence” means the place where a person usually lives, that is for at least 185 days, consecutive or not, in each calendar year, because of personal and occupational ties, or, in the case of a person with no occupational ties because of personal ties which show close links between that person and the place where he is living.

In order to be allowed to receive your vehicle, you are required to complete form C.104O, a copy of which will be given to you by Customs. You must always have this document in your vehicle and produce it when requested by a Customs or Police Officer. 

The maximum period of stay of the vehicle for private use in the Republic is six months, consecutive or not, per year.

Exceptionally you may be allowed to use the vehicle temporarily for a period of time longer than six months, if:

  • you are a student in Cyprus, in which case you will be allowed to use the vehicle throughout your stay in Cyprus exclusively for your studies; or
  • you are assigned with a task of fixed duration, in which case you will be allowed to use the vehicle throughout your stay in Cyprus exclusively for the accomplishment of your task; or
  • you have transferred your normal residence from another country to Cyprus and you intend to apply for relief on the vehicle. In such a case, so that you may not be deprived of your vehicle until you make an application and receive an answer, you may be allowed to use the vehicle temporarily up to a period of one month.

Clarification: “Persons assigned with a task of fixed duration” shall be deemed:

  • Persons having their normal residence in a third country, who come to work under a contract of specified duration as teaching personnel at the University of Cyprus or at a Private Institution of Higher Education recognised by the Ministry of Education and Culture.
  • Persons having their normal residence in a third country, who come temporarily to the Republic, in order to work under a contract of employment of a specified duration with the Government of the Republic, a Semi-governmental Organisation, legal persons of public law, International Organisations or Foreign State Organisations or Institutes established in the Republic, as well as foreign archaeological missions, provided these persons do particularly specialised work.
  • Persons having their normal residence in a third country, working temporarily in the Republic as reporters of foreign press or foreign radio and television channels in order to cover specific events.

You are allowed to drive your vehicle temporarily in Cyprus if:

  • you have a valid certificate of registration and road licence of a third country; if the foreign road licence expires during the vehicle’s stay in Cyprus, you must pay the relevant road tax fees to the Inland Transport Department;
  • you are a holder of a valid driving licence of your country or of an international driving licence;
  • the vehicle is insured by an insurance company, registered and operating in Cyprus, unless it is covered by an International Motor Insurance Certificate, known as Green Card or it bears number plates of a member state of the Multilateral Guarantee Agreement; the third countries which are members to this Agreement are the following: Croatia, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland.

While the vehicle is in Cyprus:

  • you shall not lend, sell, pledge, rent or otherwise dispose off it;
  • you shall use it exclusively for your own private needs.

Before the expiration of the six months period, or longer period allowed to you if you fall in one of the special instances, the vehicle must be:

  • re-exported; or
  • placed in a customs warehouse; or
  • destroyed under customs supervision; or
  • abandoned to Customs; or
  • cleared either on payment of the relevant customs and excise duties or on relief from them.

In all these cases you must produce to the proper customs officer your vehicle and Form C.104O, given to you at the time of importation of the vehicle.

You are advised to settle taxes of your vehicle before the expiration of the period of its temporary importation the reason being that at that date customs debt is occured and all customs duties and taxes shall be payable. In case you fail to proceed with the above settlement the vehicle will be seized as liable to forfeiture.

Motor vehicles, which have been bought in Cyprus without the payment of the relevant duties and taxes and which are still on the island with visitor´s number plates, are not allowed to be used anymore without the payment of the duties involved.

For more information, you may write to the following address:

The Director,
Department of Customs and Excise
ΤΚ 24539, 1330 Nicosia
Fax no 22407541 
E-mail; nicosia@customs.mof.gov.cy

For oral inquiries you may call any of the following telephone numbers of the Temporary Importations Section at Nicosia Customs House : 22407526, 22407591, 22407525 or 22407538.

The Department of Customs and Excise, in its effort to facilitate the public, has prepared a software in Excel which you can use on your own so as to calculate the excise duty (not the import duty) applicable to a certain vehicle. Enter the particulars required by the software and you will have the payable amount of excise duty. Please be advised that this software is provided to the public for informational purposes only.

It should be noted that for such motor vehicles that up to the 9th September 2013 were already transferred or imported to Cyprus but have not yet been released for free circulation and/or consumption, or were delivered under relief from excise duty under any law, or the excise duty was refunded, or were delivered free of excise duty for temporary use, the amount of excise duty will be charged on the lower amount calculated according to the previous Law 91(I)/2004 up to (No. 3) of 2013 or the new amending law (No. 4) no. 110(I)/2013.

The same treatment shall enjoy motor vehicles that have been shipped on a vessel destined for any legitimate port of Cyprus, up to the 9th September 2013.

The software for the calculation of excise duty for vehicles can be found here.

Please select the program that refers to the vehicle type of your interest (passenger car, double cabin or van, motorcycle)