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Cars entering Australia – Update

Vehicle shipping to Australia

Update – News just in from Australia 29.07.10

We have just received further advice from the Department of Environment, The scenarios do not apply to personally imported vehicles.  Personally imported vehicles (That is a vehicle with an Import Approval under the personal import category) will not need degassing until further notice provided the air conditioner is not designed to run on CFC gasses.

Air conditioners designed to run on CFC gasses must be degassed and rendered inoperable using CFC gasses.  They should be converted to run on R134A gas but ship without the gas and a PCE licence will not be required.   If the system is gassed a Precharged Equipment Licence will be required.

This information above now supercedes any other information below.

26.07.10 There is no longer any waiver on degassing of air conditioning in cars under the Personal Imports Scheme from 1st August 2010.

They have received a notification from Department of Environment which overturns the waiver extended to vehicles under the Personal Import Scheme with immediate effect. The alternative to degassing is to apply for a “Precharged Equipment Licence” (PCE) which will cost around A$401 per vehicle and takes up to 10 working days to issue. This is likely to result in delays in Customs clearance and storage charges if the issue is not addressed well in advance of the arrival of the vessel.

When the vehicle is degassed the technician must complete The form provided and evidence of the work done (invoice for service etc) is to accompany the form. There is no PCE required if the form and evidence is supplied.

Returned Australian vehicles are not affected.

Further information by the Ozone and Synthetic Gas Team, Australia

The Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas Management Act 1989 (the Act) controls the manufacture, import and export of a range of ozone depleting substances (ODS) and Synthetic Greenhouse Gases (SGG) in Australia. The Act stipulates that a pre-charged equipment licence is required to import into Australia refigeration and/or air conditioning equipment that contains a hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) or hydrochlorofluorcarbon (HCFC) refigerant unless the equipment being imported is covered by paragraph 68(1)(d) of the Customs Act 1901.

Paragraph 68(1)(d) of the Customs Act 1901 covers goods that are accompanied or unaccompanied personal or household effects of a passenger, or a member of crew, of a ship or aircraft. Personal or household effects DO NOT include motor vehicles, motor vehicle parts, commercial goods and bequeathed items or items that have been purchased over the internet.

The Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and Arts has aligned its policy with the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service and from 1 August 2010, all vehicles currently being imported as ‘personal effect’ will require a pre-charged equipment licence (PCE).

For information on how to apply for a PCE licence, go to:-

More information about Unaccompanied Personal Effects (UPEs) can be found on the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service website:

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the Ozone and Synthetic Gas Team on email: [email protected]

For further information on car shipping to Australia please contact FirstBase Freight Ltd, Tel: 0844 272 6731.


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