Libya: Customs and Clearance Procedures (March 2019)

Customs procedures for humanitarian cargo entering Libya through ports

All humanitarian cargo is exempted from duties and taxes.

Organisations should have a valid import licence (static card). Import licences are issued by the Ministry of Interior � Department of Statistical Code.

Prior to the vessel's arrival, organisations should send a Note Verbale to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) to ask for tax exemption, informing them about the cargo arrival.The MOFA-Immunities Department will provide the organisation with a Diplomatic Exemption on Importations Form that must be completed with information on the shipment, including bill of lading, cargo description, quantities and estimated delivery date.

Once the form has been signed and stamped by MOFA-Immunities Department, the organisation can submit this form to customs together with the Note Verbale and the below documents:

Copy of organisation's agreement/registration with the Libyan Government;

1 x Certificate of Origin (CoO) endorsed and certified by the chamber of commerce in the country of origin;

1 x original of the Commercial Invoice certified by Chamber of Commerce in the country of origin and 2 x copy;

1 x original and 2 x copy of the Bill of Lading;

1 x delivery orders;

1 x packing list.

Custom clearance officers can request a certified translation of the documents into Arabic.

An appointment letter must be issued by the importer (humanitarian organisation) to the customs clearing agent for each individual shipment that is imported into Libya.

Draft copy of all shipping and tax-exemption documents should be sent and confirmed by the customs clearing agent before shipping.

Once the cargo has arrived, the customs clearing agent should then be provided with all original documentation to be able to finalise the clearance. Customs declarations and forms including classification of goods as per customs rules will be issued. Payable services fees and/or tax will be evaluated according to valid current exchange rates, and the cargo will be released.

For humanitarian cargo such as food and health items that need additional testing/sampling once in-country before being released by customs, the shipments can be temporarily released once the customs clearing agent provides all clearance documents to Customs.

The temporary release process normally takes from 1 to 3 working days, and the cargo can then be moved to the organisation's warehouse, escorted by customs police.

The warehouse will be closed and sealed until the Food and Drug Control Centre (FDCC) tests the commodities and confirms the compliance of the shipment with Libyan standards. The cargo will then be released.

The escort by customs officials to warehouses and, in the case of transit cargo, to the border exit post, will be subject to a fee.

Source: World Food Programme