Zambia Humanitarian Customs Regulations

This document was submitted in response to a questionnaire distributed by Global Hand regarding humanitarian customs information. It provides regulations for importing humanitarian aid into Zambia.

Required Documents

  • Bill of Lading/airway bill
  • Commercial invoice
  • Packing list
  • Phytosanitary Certificate when the goods unprocessed agriculural goods, eg maize grain, rice, potatoes
  • Certificate of origin only if coming from COMESA or SADC

Prohibited Goods

  • Goods prohibited from importation by law. These are as contained in Section 40 of the Customs and Excise Act of the Laws of Zambia as indicated below: 1) Subject to the provisions of subsection (3), the importation into Zambia of the goods described in this subsection is prohibited?:-
  • False or counterfeit coin or banknotes and any coin or banknotes that are intended for circulation in Zambia that are not legal tender in Zambia;
  • Any goods which in the opinion of the Minister are indecent, obscene or objectionable;
  • Goods manufactured or produced wholly or in part by prison labour or within or in connection with any prison, jail or penitentiary excluding a bona fide gift made by a prisoner for the personal use of a private individual;
  • Pirated and counterfeit goods and any goods bearing false or misleading marks or descriptions as to their origin, purpose and use.
  • Qilika;
  • Any goods the importation of which is prohibited by or under the authority of any other law; and
  • Any other goods that may be declared to be prohibited goods by statutory order issued by the Minister. 2) Any goods imported in contravention of subsection (1) shall be liable to forfeiture. 3) The minister may authorise the importation of any goods described in subsection (1) for the purpose of study, scientific investigation, or use as evidence in any proceedings.

Tax Exemption

There is no tax exemption available when importing humanitarian aid to Zambia. However, charitable organisations, non-profit making organisations, churches, and the like may apply to the Minister of Finance for“Duty Funding”. On approval the Ministry of Finance will then bear the burden of paying import duties on behalf of consignee and these duties are paid in full by Ministry of Finance. As opposed to exempting goods therefore, they exempt organisations.

Preshipment Appication

Application for exemption should be made to Minister of Finance, Ministry of Finance and national Planning, P.O. Box 50997, Lusaka, Zambia.

Monetary Valuation

Monetary valuation is required and is based on individual item type: used clothing, used sewing machines, maize grain,which can then be added up to give total value of all consignment. Freight charge and Insurance should also preferably be given because their Customs value is based on Cost, Insurance, and Freight (CIF).


Zambia Revenue Authority


Regions / countries / territories

Africa: Zambia