I had looked at buying
a boat in South Africa
and importing it into the states either by ship or on its own bottom. There were a lot of issues involving properly paying duties and import fees
as well as the paperwork (some items are considered part of the vessel but some needed to be declared and taxed separately).
We had considered initially registering the boat in either the US or SA and found problems with both approaches. If I registered the boat in SA I had to pay SA sales tax which was 7% if I remember right. If I didn't register the boat in SA I had something like 30 days to get the boat out of SA before I owed the tax, again, not very likely to be avoided.
All told if I did the deal where the boat was sailed up on her bottom the combined taxes
and registration fees
came to something like 23%. When the taxes
were combined with the cost of shipping
, and inspecting and surveying the boat from long distance, it made the boat a pretty poor deal even though it was roughly 30% below US market value.