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Clear your exports

Clear your goods using an export entry

Use an export entry to clear your goods if:

  • your export’s free on board value is worth more than NZ$1000 (you can also get an export entry if your goods are worth less than NZ$1,000, but we don’t require it)
  • you’re exporting under the Secure Exports Scheme (SES).

Once we have accepted and cleared your export entry, we will issue you or your broker/agent/freight forwarder a delivery order for your items. A delivery order allows your items to be loaded onto a craft for export.

The following rules apply:

  • for air or sea (including post), you must use a single entry to cover items you’re exporting on a single voyage or flight
  • a new entry is necessary for each consignment or order, to each consignee.

You should lodge your export entry at least 48 hours before you load your items for export. We are able to process your entry within 1 hour and either:

  • give you a delivery order, or
  • tell you we need to examine your items.

If you lodge your entry less than 48 hours before you export by ship – or 9 hours before you export by air – your items might miss their voyage or flight.

Exemptions from an export entry clearance

You don’t need an export entry clearance for some items. You might still need approvals or permits from other agencies, however.

Exempted items include:

  • gifts for people resident outside NZ
  • trade samples supplied for free to people resident outside NZC
  • passengers’ baggage and personal items (except items sold from a Customs-Controlled Area, or getting a duty drawback)
    • this does not apply to motor vehicles or boats
  • items exported by diplomatic missions
  • films and video tapes which will be used overseas and then returned to NZ
  • ships and planes leaving NZ under their own power, except those:
    • imported on a temporary import entry (TIE)
    • imported for charter or lease in NZ
    • which are going to be sold overseas
    • built in NZ, for export
  • items which are being sent for repair and return, by post
  • commercial documents and newspapers
  • items with a free on board value of less than NZ$1000, that:
    • aren’t sold from a Customs Controlled Area
    • don’t have duty drawback
    • are being carried out of New Zealand by passengers, that they’ll use for commercial purpose overseas and then bring back with them to NZ. Examples include:
    • laptops
    • mobile phones
    • video equipment.

Full details of goods exempt from export entry can be found on the NZ Legislation website.

If items are going to be used for commercial purposes and returned to NZ, we recommend you lodge an export entry clearance, even though you don’t need to. It shows evidence of export and will make the items easier to bring back into NZ. You may need an import entry for the items when they return to NZ.

Before you export anything, check it isn’t prohibited or restricted.

Exporting items in your luggage

In some cases, you may want to export commercial items as luggage. We will still treat them as exports, and you may need an export entry clearance.

Clear your goods using ECI

Use an electronic cargo information (ECI) clearance if your export’s free on board value is worth less than NZ$1000. You can only lodge ECIs if you use EDI software.

You can’t split consignments to come under the NZ$1000 limit.

The following rules apply:

  • an ECI report can only cover shipments you’re exporting on a single flight or voyage
  • you can declare consignments for any number of exporters on one ECI report (brokers only).

Bringing items back into NZ

If you’re going to bring items that you’ve exported back to NZ you may not need to pay duty on these items when you bring them back into NZ. You may still need an import entry.

You may be able to use an ATA carnet if you’re going to re-import the items you’re exporting.

An exception is for goods on consignment, unless every item in the consignment returns to NZ. In cases like this, you can still get an export entry clearance or ECI.

ATA carnets are useful for items such as:

  • commercial samples
  • professional equipment
  • items for overseas exhibitions.

ATA carnets are recognised by most international Customs organisations. A customs officer must sign your carnet:

  • when you leave NZ at the start of your trip
  • in and out of every country you visit while you’re away
  • when your items arrive back in NZ.

They are valid for 1 year.

Contact your local Chamber of Commerce to find out about getting an ATA carnet.