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Old 04-10-2011, 16:40   #931
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Old 08-10-2011, 00:21   #932
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

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Originally Posted by savoir View Post
Among boats being sold within Australia, GST is only payable on new boats.
This, we believe, is not correct.

GST is payable on used boats as well, certainly if sold in Australia by a broker or someone using the vessel in business.

GST is also clearly payable for landing a second-hand (or new) vessel in Australia that was purchased overseas. Credits may be available to offset the GST if the vessel is to be used in business.

The situation for a completely private sale in Australia is not so clear...at least not to us!

Anyone care to further clarify the position from experience?
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Old 08-10-2011, 00:32   #933
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

The easy way to summarize is that if you are buying from a "business" then GST will be payable. Problem is that if the seller is a private person but owns the boat through their business/company etc then GST is payable.

As for a broker, they just broker the deal and don't own the boat so GST should not be payable just because they are involved, however you may have no idea whom you are buying off, business or private! The seller would pay GST on the brokerage fee.
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Old 08-10-2011, 00:33   #934
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

New Boat sold in australia to australia resident GST YES

New boat sold in Australia to overseas resident, who the takes the vessel out of the country
GST NO

New or used boat imported into Australia by Australian resident GST YES

New or used boat imported into Australia by overseas resident GST YES - note for import only visitor have no issues.

Private Used boat sold in Australia to Australian Resident GST NO
Private Used Boat sold in Australia to Overseas Resident GST NO


Commercial used vessel sold in Australia to Australian Resident GST YES but if you keep it in work, the GST is claimable.
Commercial used vessel sold in Australia to Overseas Resident GST YES probably


The suggestion above that GST is payable on a used boat sold by a broker is incorrect.
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Old 08-10-2011, 01:17   #935
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

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Originally Posted by Factor View Post
New Boat sold in australia to australia resident GST YES

New boat sold in Australia to overseas resident, who the takes the vessel out of the country
GST NO

New or used boat imported into Australia by Australian resident GST YES

New or used boat imported into Australia by overseas resident GST YES - note for import only visitor have no issues.

Private Used boat sold in Australia to Australian Resident GST NO
Private Used Boat sold in Australia to Overseas Resident GST NO


Commercial used vessel sold in Australia to Australian Resident GST YES but if you keep it in work, the GST is claimable.
Commercial used vessel sold in Australia to Overseas Resident GST YES probably


The suggestion above that GST is payable on a used boat sold by a broker is incorrect.

Absolutely correct Sir, no if buts or question about it!
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Old 08-10-2011, 01:33   #936
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

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The suggestion above that GST is payable on a used boat sold by a broker is incorrect.
Thanks for that (and the rest of your very concise clarifications!) Factor. We stand humbly and gratefully corrected.

We suspected the position as you describe, but heard of one situation that seemed at least potentially contradictory. A business buyer of a used vessel allegedly effectively reduced the vessel price by subsequently (after the sale) claiming a GST rebate, allegedly on the basis that the broker failed to specify whether the sale was GST-inclusive...and somehow there was an assumption that it was GST-inclusive, thus securing the rebate.

Anyway, your post is a mark of top-class clarity...as are many others that appear in and around the Seawind organisation!
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Old 08-10-2011, 01:40   #937
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

You will notice I studiously avoided talking about duty!!, Thanks for the nice words, any good competent broker or new boat agent should be able to be very clear for you as to the GST/Duty situation on a particular boat, if they say they want to get further advice, that is okay as well, but if they fluff about then go elsewhere. It is a combination of many things, - status of the vessel, status of the seller and status of the buyer.

PS Lagoon in Australia has some good people as well, one in particular is an associate for whom I have high professional regard.
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Old 08-10-2011, 03:10   #938
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

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Originally Posted by D&D View Post
This, we believe, is not correct.

GST is payable on used boats as well, certainly if sold in Australia by a broker or someone using the vessel in business.

GST is also clearly payable for landing a second-hand (or new) vessel in Australia that was purchased overseas. Credits may be available to offset the GST if the vessel is to be used in business.

The situation for a completely private sale in Australia is not so clear...at least not to us!

Anyone care to further clarify the position from experience?
I already did.

You are only right if you can find a broker who is a licensed 2nd hand dealer and buys from the previous owner on spec.
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Old 08-10-2011, 03:29   #939
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

[QUOTE][You are only right if you can find a broker who is a licensed 2nd hand dealer and buys from the previous owner on spec./QUOTE]

You are not buying the boat FROM the broker, he is simply brokering the deal between the buyer and seller.
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Old 08-10-2011, 03:33   #940
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

Which is exactly why there is no GST payable, just like I said in the first place.
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Old 08-10-2011, 04:34   #941
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

I think the situation is clear to all, and Factor summed it up succintly.

The brokerage fee will have GST charged on it, but that is of absolutely no interest to the buyer because it's a service provided to, and paid for by the seller.
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Old 19-10-2011, 18:33   #942
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

We just completed the importation of our boat this week. It was a much more straight forward process than I expected, given the complicated situation we were in. We bought our boat last December. The boat was owned by an American and was located in Australia under a cruising permit, and it hadn't been imported. Being American residents, we didn't want to pay duty and GST on the boat in a country where we are not residents. Unfortunately Australian Customs is not very accommodating of this situation. Their position is that any boat under a cruising permit may not be sold in Australia unless it is first imported by the owner, regardless of nationality or country of residency of the owner and buyer. I thought it was likely I would want to keep the boat in Australia, so I asked if we could buy the boat, then import it directly ourselves (the owner was selling in USD at a much lower price if we did this). Amazingly the answer was No. So we ended up having the boat sailed over to NZ, purchased it there (no duty or GST required for non-resident buyers) reflagged it as a US registered vessel, then sailed it back to Brisbane under new ownership and obtained a 12 month cruising permit on entry. In the past year we have decided to remain in Australia long term, so we went ahead with the importation. We used a local customs broker and the entire process was done in a couple of weeks without any hassle.
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Old 19-10-2011, 20:11   #943
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

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given the complicated situation we were in.
Whoa...what a saga! We can well imagine what must've been some frequent periods of frustration in all of that Poozer.

Anyway, well done in the result...and welcome to OZ! Where's Zangezi now? We'll hope to catch you on some beautiful anchorage.
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Old 19-10-2011, 21:08   #944
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

Yes, plenty of cussing involved in this exercise!

We're based in Brisbane at the RQYS, and have been exploring the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast up to Gladstone. Heading down to Coffs Harbour after Christmas.
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Old 19-10-2011, 22:01   #945
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Re: Importing a Boat to Australia

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Heading down to Coffs Harbour after Christmas.
We just returned from Coffs, our first voyage in those waters where we didn't see any whales, although there were still plenty of whale-watching tours going out and we finished the voyage with heaps of whales between Port Stephens and right up to the entrance to Sydney Harbour.

If you make it any further south we'll be around Port Stephens for the New Year, but then we'll be a LOT further south, heading down to Tassie for February.

Anyway, well done again on your successful import...and enjoy!
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