French Polynesia: Council of Ministers Reduces Exemption Period for Yachts

French Polynesia’s Council of Ministers has reduced the maximum length of admission for exemption from duties and taxes for foreign pleasure vessels from 36 months to 24 months.  

Published 4 years ago

The Council said the action has been brought about after considering the harmful effects of “the permanent presence of some of these vessels on different lagoons “.

Amendment to Temporary Admission Regime

Catamaran at anchor.
SV Starry Horizons at Anchor in French Polynesia. (c) SV Starry Horizons

According to the TahitiInfos website, the Vice-President of French Polynesia presented an amendment to the temporary admission regime for foreign pleasure craft stationed in French Polynesia.

As part of the 2015-2020 tourism development strategy, in 2018 the government set up the so-called “36 month route”. This temporary admission system allowed foreign boats to navigate in Polynesian waters, exempt from all duties and taxes for a maximum period of three years, renewable without limit.

The Council noted however noted that the system had become diverted from its initial purpose by some boats, which unfortunately generated many harmful effects. The permanent presence of some of these boats on different lagoons generated multiple complaints from residents, tourists or local businesses, including about the impact on the natural beauty of the Polynesian landscapes.

More appropriate framework

In order to provide a more appropriate framework for the admission of foreign boats, a series of modifications was proposed to the Council of Ministers which, without going back on the right granted to foreign ships to visit the Polynesian islands, provided certain restricted conditions.

Condition for renewal

From now on, the maximum period of admission for exemption from duties and taxes will be 24 months, and will only be renewable after having spent a minimum period of 6 months outside Polynesian waters. If the owners of the vessels wish to extend their stay, they must pay any related duties and taxes.

The customs service is responsible for ensuring compliance with the regulations by all foreign boaters traveling in French Polynesia. As such, the exercise in the territory of a gainful activity by foreigners under the temporary admission regime, is liable to prosecution.

 Noonsite has not independently verified this information.

This article was translated from the original article using Google Translate.

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