How to Apply for Foreign Number Plates in Kenya
Are you considering driving a vehicle with foreign registration in Kenya? This guide walks you through the steps, documents, and fees involved in acquiring foreign number plates.
If you're considering driving a vehicle with foreign registration number plates in Kenya, it's essential to understand the process and requirements involved. The National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) and the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) have stringent regulations to ensure those using such vehicles meet specific criteria. In this comprehensive guide, we'll take you through the steps of applying for foreign number plates in Kenya, shedding light on the necessary documents, fees, and the reasons behind the popularity of foreign-registered vehicles.
Who Can Apply for Foreign Number Plates?
Motorists bearing foreign registration number plates must meet specific criteria, regardless of whether they are Kenyan citizens or foreigners residing in Kenya. These criteria include proof of employment in the country of origin, work permits or residency documents, and ownership documentation. Let's break down the requirements further:
1. For Foreigners from Comesa and EAC Nations:
- Proof of employment in the country of origin.
- Work permits or residency documents.
- Ownership documentation or a power of attorney if acting as the owner's representative.
- Diplomats must prove their diplomatic status.
2. Temporary Importation of Road Vehicles (Form C32):
Foreign operators from EAC and Comesa nations must possess a valid Temporary Importation of Road Vehicles Form (Form C32) obtained at a border station before receiving entry approval.
3. For Foreigners from Outside Comesa and EAC Nations:
- Valid passports or international circulation permits from their countries of origin.
Even with all the required paperwork, vehicle owners must apply online through the eCitizen portal for a foreign motor vehicle permit. The Form C32 (or an endorsed international circulation permit) and Comesa insurance are essential requirements for applicants.
Why Choose Foreign-Registered Vehicles?
Many Kenyans opt for vehicles with foreign registration number plates due to their cost-effectiveness. Countries like Tanzania, Uganda, and South Sudan offer less expensive vehicles, making them attractive for Kenyan consumers. Some countries even allow the importation of older vehicles into their markets, further enhancing affordability.
Age Restrictions on Imported Vehicles
It's important to note that there are age restrictions on imported vehicles in Kenya. While Tanzania permits the importation of vehicles up to ten years old, Kenya's regulations allow up to eight. Uganda has also imposed restrictions, recently passing a law restricting the entry of vehicles made more than fifteen years ago. However, countries like Burundi, Rwanda, and South Sudan have no official age restrictions on used cars.
Future Plans for Importation Threshold
Member nations of the East African Community (EAC) are working on reducing the importation threshold for used cars. Kenya, for instance, has plans to reduce the current eight-year age limit on secondhand cars with engines larger than 1500cc to five years.
Applying for foreign number plates in Kenya is a regulated process that requires specific documents and adherence to NTSA and KRA guidelines. Foreigners and Kenyan residents must provide proof of employment or ownership, obtain necessary permits, and apply online for a foreign motor vehicle permit. The affordable and available vehicles from neighbouring countries have made foreign-registered cars popular among Kenyan consumers. As regulations evolve, staying informed about changes in the importation threshold and related policies is essential.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Who can apply for foreign number plates in Kenya?
- Kenyan residents and foreigners must meet specific criteria, including proof of employment, work permits, and ownership documentation.
What is the Form C32, and how do I obtain it?
- Form C32 is a requirement for foreign operators from EAC and Comesa nations. It can be obtained at a border station before receiving entry approval.
Why do Kenyans choose foreign-registered vehicles?
- Many Kenyans prefer foreign-registered vehicles due to their cost-effectiveness, especially from neighbouring countries like Tanzania and Uganda.
Are there age restrictions on imported vehicles in Kenya?
- Yes, there are age restrictions. Kenya permits vehicles up to eight years old, while Uganda has more stringent regulations.
What are the plans for importation thresholds in the EAC?
- Member nations are working to reduce the importation threshold for used cars. Kenya, for instance, plans to reduce the age limit for certain vehicles.
What happens if I meet the foreign number plate requirements in Kenya?
- Individuals who do not meet the requirements will not be issued a foreign motor vehicle permit, and any such vehicle operated without the necessary documents may be impounded.
Where can I get more information or seek clarification on this matter?
What are the fees for foreign vehicle permits in Kenya?
- The fees vary based on engine capacity, ranging from Ksh2,491 to Ksh11,981 for different durations.