Saudi ports received a total of 2.4 million cars in 2013, registering an increase of about 100 percent over the figures of 2009 when the ports received about 1.4 million cars.
Local media quoting a report released by Sea Ports Authority (SPA) said Jeddah Islamic Port (JIP) accounted for the maximum number of car imports with a figure of 710,975 followed by Dammam Port at 266,455 cars.
Small cars, mini-buses and pick-up trucks which are over five years old and heavy-duty trucks that are over 10 years old are not allowed to be imported, the local media said quoting a source at the Saudi Customs Department.
However, antique cars which are more than 30 years old are allowed to be imported but on condition that it be categorized on the customs tag as “antique car for possession,” the source said.
According to the prerequisite conditions, clearance of used cars is subject to the car’s body not being damaged or involved in accidents including submergence in water, fire, collision, rollover, besides having clear chassis numbers. Vehicles used as taxicab or by police are not allowed to be imported, they said.
It may be recalled that Saudi Arabian customs regulations, with effect from June 2009, stipulated that cars which are five years old or less could only be imported into the Kingdom, whether in dry containers or open top containers.