Jamaica relaxes age limit on imported used vehicles

The extended age limit, which takes effect December 1, 2011, will affect motor cars, sports utility vehicles, pick-ups and cargo vans.

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Wednesday November 23, 2011 – Government has revised its policy on imported used vehicles in the wake of a fall-off in the local industry.

It has increased the maximum age limit of certain categories of imported used motor vehicles from three to five years and from four to six years for light motor vehicles.

The extended age limit, which takes effect December 1, 2011, will affect motor cars, sports utility vehicles, pick-ups and cargo vans.

The policy shift was announced yesterday by Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Dr Christopher Tufton, who explained that the industry had declined significantly, hitting an all time low in 2009.

“The used car industry was hard hit by the global recession, increased demand from other markets for 3 year-old cars as well as unfavourable movements of the Japanese currency. This resulted in a decline of over 57 per cent between 2008 and 2009,” he stated.

Dr. Tufton pointed out that while the duty reduction implemented to stimulate the industry at the beginning of the financial year resulted in an estimated 14 per cent increase in the importation of all vehicles for the period April to September, 2011, relative to the corresponding period in 2010, sales in the used car sector has since tapered due to cost considerations.

He emphasised that the policy modification is being implemented, “to make motor vehicle more affordable to lower income groups who cannot afford to purchase new cars as well as to boost activity in the used car sector.”

President of the Jamaica Used Car Dealers Association Lynvalle Hamilton has welcomed the decision.

He said consumers should begin to experience the cost benefits from early next year.

Leave a Reply