Bringing my car to HK

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  1. #1

    Bringing my car to HK

    I have a car in Australia that I have owned for over 12 months. It is a 2009 model (owned it just on 12 months) and has done only ~1600kms. It has all the airbags and modern cons without the need to do to much for compliance reasons. I'm thinking of bringing it to HK and have read conflicting details on the taxes. From what I understand:

    1. there are no import duties
    2. there is a First Registration Tax (FRT) which is quite substantial
    3. there is the obvious cost of shipping, insurance, etc to get it here

    The FRT seems to be on ANY car that has never been registered in HK. However, some of the posts in forums on this site indicate that you can bring in your car from other countries and be either exempt or have lower tax "bands" since this is "my" car and I am not importing it from a dealer or buying from an overseas source. Is this correct? Furthermore, I read somewhere that it might be possible to "get around" the FRT by saying that it is being used for private or taxi use or something. Can anyone confirm for me what the status is? Most posts and sites seem to indicate that there is no getting around it, that it doesn't matter whether it's your car or not overseas, and that you'll always be hit with the FRT making it not worthwhile to bring my car here. For the record and in case people suggest I'm crazy and that the transport in HK is fine and a car is not needed, I'm thinking about bringing it here as I am moving here with my wife and 3 kids so if we end up living in somewhere like Clearwater Bay we would need a car to get to a nearby MTR or to drive the kids to school, etc - in that case it would be a necessity not a luxury!


  2. #2

    Join Date
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    I agree - if you decide to live in CWB you'll probably need a car .. but it sounds like you need to decide where to live before trying to import the car rather than the other way around
    I looked into this on a couple of occasions moving internationally, and I never found it worthwhile given the cost of shipping/taxes etc, over selling the car at home and buying new on arrival. Just my take, fyi. We don't have one here - this was on previous moves.


  3. #3

    Join Date
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    Sell your car in Australia and buy a car here would be the cheaper and easiest option.


  4. #4

    Thanks people...whilst I agree that selling the car and buying another here is an option, I'm trying to find out if what I understand so far is correct. I have a friend who owns a shipping company and can assist with VERY cheap shipping and insurance etc. The real sting seems to be the FRT on arrival. Is there around this?


  5. #5

    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirkster:
    The real sting seems to be the FRT on arrival. Is there around this?
    NOPE!!!! How do you think the govt makes money

    Dont read the threads, read the govt website for actual fact.

    Transport Department - Guidelines for Importation and Registration of Motor Vehicle

  6. #6

    Yes, read that site amongst a load of others. But the government won't tell you about ways around the tax only that you need to pay it. Just like they don't tell you how to minimise income tax, only that you have to pay it.... :-)

    That is why I normally see a tax specialist for advice when I have complete my tax returns. In this case I need some advice on any ways around the FRT.


  7. #7

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    There is none.


  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by dirkster:
    That is why I normally see a tax specialist for advice when I have complete my tax returns. In this case I need some advice on any ways around the FRT.
    Income tax is different. I really really dont think you can get away from paying the FRT. Customs will get you and if you dont pay, i dont think you will get the car registration paper, without that basically you cant get road tax, insurance etc etc.

    Just calculate how much the FRT will be be if you bring it and see if its really worth it.

    I live in Clear water bay and i know how important it is to have a car but really the second hand market is very good here depening on your budget and you can easily get a good deal. Why bother will all the hassle. just my 2 cents.

    If you do need help in getting a second hand car, one of my next door neighbours is a car dealer and can help you out, i have recommned him before to other geo expaters.

  9. #9

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    What Australian ADR'd car, are you thinking of bringing into Hong Kong, Dirkster ?

    Last edited by Skyhook; 03-01-2010 at 08:33 PM.

  10. #10

    Thanks heaps. From what I understand the penalty for not paying the FRT is HKD$500,000. So it's not worth the risk or not paying. As far as my car goes, its worth about HKD$400,000 so it makes it quite expensive to bring in (ie. almost teh same as the cost of the car to bring it here). I think I will take the advice and look to buy a second hand car here. If I hear of some loop hole in the law that allows for a way around the FRT, I'll post it!


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