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Motor vehicle owners have another six weeks in which to clear approximately 350 damaged and over-aged vehicles that have piled up at the island’s wharves.
Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Karl Samuda, making the announcement at a press conference held at the Ministry in New Kingston today (December 22), said that the move was prompted by interest groups and stakeholders, who had appealed to the Ministry to allow them to clear the vehicles.
“What we have decided in the Ministry is that we would allow these vehicles to be taken by their owners with all the provisions under the Customs Act, where the appropriate duties would be paid, etcetera…rather than what is customary to auction the vehicles,” he said.
The Minister further explained that some of the vehicles remained on the wharves as licences were not issued because they did not comply with the age limits placed on the importation of certain types of vehicles.

Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Hon. Karl Samuda, addresses a press conference held at the Ministry in New Kingston on Tuesday, December 22, to discuss measures relating to over-aged and damaged vehicles.

For those vehicles that would have been en route to Jamaica prior to today, Mr. Samuda noted that those will receive special consideration as well, but warned that following this “one off” clearance, the Ministry would be very rigid in the application of the regulations that govern the importation of vehicles into Jamaica.
He said that the six-week time frame would also apply for the clearance of used tyres on the wharves, now totalling 6000, adding that those tyres on their way to Jamaica, before today, will also receive favourable consideration.
The Minister further informed that the Bureau of Standards Jamaica, which is responsible for ensuring that the tyres brought into Jamaica are safe, will be speeding up the inspection process.
“So, I have asked them to conduct the appropriate random checks to make sure that these tyres will meet our minimum standards but that they must do it expeditiously, and so, they have decided to make sure that these things are done quickly, so that, again, we can clear the wharf,” he said.
He noted too, that a certain set of standards are currently being finalised which will govern the importation of tyres.
After the time stipulated for the clearance has expired, the tyres and the vehicles will be disposed of, the Minister warned, pointing out that the wharves could not afford to be the warehouses for importers and that the port facilities were not designed to be storage facilities.

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