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What it takes to legally own or drive a car with foreign number plates in Kenya 

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Motorists using vehicles bearing foreign registration number plates are subjected to tough conditions.

Using such cars requires proof of employment in the country of origin, including work permits or residency documents, according to the NTSA and KRA.

Foreigners from the Common Market of East and Southern Africa (Comesa) and the East African Community (EAC) are not exempt from this requirement and must present proof of ownership or, if acting as the owner’s representative, a power of attorney from the owner.

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Along with demonstrating their employment in a diplomatic role, diplomats must also demonstrate their diplomatic status.

The foreign operator from EAC and Comesa nations must possess a valid temporary importation of road vehicles form (Form C32), which is issued at a border station, before receiving entry approval.

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Foreigners from outside the two regional blocs must present valid passports or international circulation permits from their countries of origin.

A foreign-registered motor vehicle cannot be accessed by anybody without these documents, and any such vehicle that is operated without them will be seized.

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Despite having all the required paperwork, the car owners will still need to apply online through the eCitizen site for a foreign motor vehicle permit.

The Form C32 or an endorsed international circulation permit from the country of origin, along with Comesa insurance, are requirements for applicants.

Kenyans frequently use vehicles with foreign registration since they are less expensive, particularly those from Tanzania, Uganda, and South Sudan. Some countries even let older vehicles in their marketplaces.

While Tanzania permits the importation of vehicles up to ten years old, Kenya now only permits the importation of vehicles up to eight years old, and Uganda recently passed a law restricting the entry of vehicles made more than fifteen years ago. On the other hand, there are no official restrictions on the age of used cars in Burundi, Rwanda, or South Sudan.

By 2021, member nations of the EAC must conclude negotiations on plans to reduce the importation threshold for used cars.

Kenya has already made plans to reduce the current eight-year limit on the age of secondhand automobiles with engines larger than 1500cc to five.

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Yvone Kendi
Yvone Kendi
Writer by heart. Lover of life and technology. Helping you with simple life hacks using technology. Contact me at [email protected]

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