Registering a Foreign Vehicle in Hong Kong
Importing a car from abroad? Find out how to register it with the Hong Kong authorities...
Before deciding whether to import a car into Hong Kong, it is worth considering the following points:
- Road users drive on the left, and applications for the registration and licensing of a left-hand drive vehicle will not be accepted except in special circumstances. As mainland China drives on the right and systems for driving harmonisation are being considered, this may change in the future
- Private car ownership is discouraged by the government and public transport is efficient. The costs associated with owning a car reflect the government's policy. There are also strict guidelines regarding emissions and noise levels
Before a car can be used in Hong Kong, the importer must register and licence the vehicle.
To import a vehicle, there are four steps:
- Approval or Exemption from the Environmental Protection Department.
- Vehicle Importation.
- Vehicle Examination.
- Vehicle Registration and Licensing.
It is necessary to prove that the vehicle to be imported is fully compliant with the emission standards in the Air Pollution Control regulations. Proof of emissions compliance may take the form of documents issued by the vehicle manufacturer or an emission testing report issued by an approved test laboratory. The application form should be submitted to the Environmental Protection Department for approval with all original supporting documents.
- Environment Protection Department Headquarters
At: 33/F-34/F & 46/F-48/F Revenue Tower, 5 Gloucester Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Tel: 2824 3773
Environment Protection Department Branch Offices:
- Southorn Centre Office
At: 28/F, Southorn Centre, 130 Hennessy Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong
Tel: 2573 7746
- Kowloon Office
At: 8/F, Cheung Sha Wan Government Offices, 303 Cheung Sha Wan Road, Kowloon
Tel: 2402 5200
Enquiries about approved test laboratories, emission standards and exemption criteria can be made to the Environmental Protection Department at following telephone numbers:
- Exhaust emission: Tel: 2877 0448
- Noise emission: Tel: 2411 9665
Upon approval from the Environmental Protection Department, the applicant may arrange to import the vehicle from overseas to Hong Kong. Imported vehicles are not subject to Customs Tax; however, the importer must send an import declaration to the Customs and Excise Department (C&ED) within 14 days of the importation of vehicle.
- Customs and Excise Department
At: 11/F, North Point Government Offices, 333 Java Road, North Point, Hong Kong
Tel: 2231 4391
Fax: 2598 4975
Within 30 days of the vehicle's importation, Import Return Form No. CED336 and Declaration Form No. CED336A should be submitted to the Motor Vehicles Valuation Group of the C&ED for valuation of the taxable value of the vehicle.
- Import return forms may be downloaded from the C&ED website
Note: It is an offence not to file the import return form within 30 days of the vehicle's importation; the offence is punishable by a fine and/or imprisonment.
Following the submission of the import return, the Customs and Excise Department will issue a "Notification of Motor Vehicle Provisional Taxable Value". The notification should be produced upon the vehicle's first registration with the Transport Department.
It is necessary to take private cars to the To Kwa Wan Vehicle Examination Centre for inspection. Either the original certificate or the original letter of exemption will be necessary to prove that the car has complied with the vehicle emissions standard. The vehicle examination is subject to a fee. If it vehicle passes the examination, a Certificate of Roadworthiness will be issued by the Examination Centre.
- To Kwa Wan Vehicle Examination Centre
At: 9-10 Long Yuet Street, Kowloon
Tel: 2364 7211 / 2333 3112
- The Department of Transport more details of the required documents for an imported vehicle’s inspection (PDF)
When applying for the vehicle's first registration, a completed copy of application form TD22 should be submitted to the Hong Kong Licensing Office of the Transport Department. Note: Only a double-sided photocopy of form TD22 will be accepted.
- The form TD22 may be downloaded from the Transport Department website
The following supporting documents are necessary:
- purchase invoice or manufacturer invoice
- original identity document of owner
- valid third party risk insurance policy or cover note
- notification of provisional taxable value of a vehicle issued by the Motor Vehicles Valuation Group of the Customs and Excise Department
- a certificate of roadworthiness
Note: A translation provided by a Consulate must accompany any documents not in English or Chinese.
- Hong Kong Licensing Office
At: 3/F, United Centre, 95 Queensway, Hong Kong
Tel: 2804 2637
Fax: 2804 2599
Once the documents have been verified, the following fees have to be paid:
- first registration tax
- registration fee
- vehicle licence fee
- levy to the Traffic Accident Victim Assistance Fund for the licensing of the vehicle
At present, vehicle owners are allocated a vehicle registration number upon registration of a vehicle or they may get a number of their own preference through auction.
The existing numbers are of fixed patterns with not more than six characters. They are either all numbers without a prefix or with one or two letters as a prefix, followed by not more than four numbers.
Exporting a Vehicle
Under Hong Kong law, any person exporting a registered vehicle from Hong Kong should notify the Commissioner for Transport in writing within 15 days at the following address, and should enclose copies of its registration documents:
- Licensing Division, Transport Department
At: 3/F, United Centre, 95 Queensway, Hong Kong
Tel: 2804 2600
Fax: 2804 2652
- Hong Kong Customs and Excise Department
- Environmental Protection Department
- Further information from the Transport Department
- Full details of the vehicle import procedure (pdf)