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Importing a NZ built boat back to NZ from offshore

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Been a long time since I posted here


Anyone know the ins and outs.

I vaguely recall if a boat was built in NZ it was GST exempt to bring her back in?


I have called Customs but they didn't have much of a clue to be honest, the girl said she talked with supervisor and it was 5% duty and 15% GST on agreed sale price.


When I mentioned GST would have already been a component while the vessel was being built here she went vague and directed me to the website which doesn't appear to tell you much.


Can anyone shed any light on the subject?



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If you're seriously considering this (rather than academic curiosity) then I'd suggest you consult an accountant with special focus on trade. Reason being I suspect the answer won't be black & white and will depend on timing, paper trail of evidence, what financial transaction (if any) took place when the vessel left NZ etc. And especially if Customs themselves are vague then you could be at risk of getting one answer today and a different answer the day you bring it in - with the possibility of a nasty financial surprise in the process. In which case I'd want to get a written confirmation beforehand.

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Do not forget all overseas purchases now how GST from 1/12/2019

At a guess the GST was payable when yacht being built in NZ and a claim for GST filed when exported,so now you want to import it maybe subject to GST

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Thanks for the replies thus far, yes we (wifey and I) are seriously looking at a nice kiwi built boat currently offshore but obviously paying GST to return it here becomes a bit of a dealbreaker.

So it is a practical rather than an academic matter,  it is frustrating that a govt dept is so vague and yes the answer one day to the next could hvave significant implications from a financial stand point.


Will see if we can explore the previous papertrail with regard to the vessel going offshore and see what that gives us.

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If it was exported after construction, so no tax was paid on the original purchase, tax would be due.

If the original purchase was in NZ, tax would have been paid, so none is due.

My understanding is that's how it works in the EU so NZ may be the same, otherwise they're double dipping and we all know the government would never do that to us.

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seems clear enough you pay




You can get a “household items” concession if:

  • you’re moving to NZ, or moving back after 21 months or more away, and
  • you’ve used the items for their intended purpose.

This means you won’t have to pay GST and duties on some items.

You can also get concessions on:

  • private vehicles, including:
    • motorcycles
    • cars
    • scooters
    • motorhomes
    • camper vans
    • ambulances
    • boats
    • aircraft.
  • If you don’t qualify for concessions

    If you don’t qualify for concessions, you will have to pay:

    • GST on motorcycles, cars and planes
    • GST and Customs duty of 5% on private boats (yachts and other vessels for pleasure or sport)

New rules 1/12/19     buying online subject to gst regardless of value.

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