How to import new cars from Belgium

Updated July 18, 2017

New cars can be bought from car dealers throughout Belgium. New cars are generally cheaper in Belgium than in other countries in Europe. When you buy a new car from a VAT (value added tax) or TVA (taxe sur la valeur ajoutée) registered business in Belgium, you will have to pay VAT to the seller. The rate as of 2010 was 21 per cent of the purchase price of the car.

Check how much tax you will be asked to pay for importing a new vehicle to another country. Even within Europe this can range from just 1 per cent to 2 per cent, to almost 75 per cent in some countries.

Decide which brand of car your want to buy and find a reputable dealer. If your French is not good, you may want a translator to help you with the deal. Some dealers may speak a little English, but this is not guaranteed. Personal cheques, banker's cheques, bank transfers or credit card transactions are all acceptable forms of payment.

Make sure the dealer gives you a registration request form. This is called a demande d'immatriculation -- formulaire rose. You will need this to transfer the car to your name. You will also need a conformity certificate, or certificat de conformité, and a bill of sale, or invoice.

Make sure the registration request has two stamps on it. These are called a 904 and a 705 stamp. The 904 stamp shows that the car has been legally registered, and all required VAT payments have been made. The 705 stamp shows the car has been through the required customs channels. The conformity certificate proves that the car is up to European emissions and safety standards.

Take all these papers to the nearest vehicle registration office which is called the Direction Immatriculation, or DIV, along with your identity documents, including passport, and proof of your overseas address. A utility bill, bank statement, or driver's license is usually adequate. You will have to register your new car on a temporary registration basis, and get transit plates, before you can export the car to your chosen destination.

Take out a proper insurance policy. If you are driving through Europe, this should include full European coverage. In Belgium, and much of Europe, it is the vehicle that is insured, rather than the individual driver. The minimum requirement is third party, but fully comprehensive is advisable with a new car. Third party just covers the other person if you have an accident, while fully comprehensive will cover you and your vehicle as well.

Drive home if you are importing the car to another European country close by, or organise land or sea transportation to your destination. Most sea freight companies offer shared container options, which may make transportation cheaper.

Things You'll Need

  • Registration request form
  • Conformity certificate
  • Invoice
  • Passport
  • Proof of address (such as utility bill)
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About the Author

Fiona Wilkinson is a freelance writer with a diploma in journalism and a B.Sc. in nutrition. She has 15 years of experience writing for a range of online and print publications on nutrition, health and fitness, travel and current affairs. Wilkinson is also a yoga teacher and Pilates instructor.