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Import control

Import control is vital to prevent the introduction of foreign pests and diseases into South Africa.  When plants and plant products are to be imported, the importer must apply for an import permit.  A Pest Risk Assessment (PRA)  based on scientific data, is conducted and specific conditions are set according to the phytosanitary risks involved. 

Procedures to follow when importing plants and plant products into South Africa

  • Before import the importer should find out what conditions apply to his/ her goods

    • Crop?

    • From which country?

    • Quantity?

    • When?

    • How?

  • Consult the Agricultural Pests Act (Act No 36 of 1983)

  • Consult the import conditions published in the Government Gazette of South Africa

  • Payment for import permits issued in terms of the Agricultural Pests Act, 1983 (Act No. 36 of 1983)

  • Contact 
    Directorate Plant Health
    Private Bag X258
    Pretoria 0001

    Tel ++27 12 319 6102
    Fax ++27 12 319 6370
    E-mail JeremiahMA@nda.agric.za.

  • The importer must request his/ her supplier or exporter in the source country to ask that country’s NPPO if it can comply with the import conditions of South Africa

    • Standard gene source quantities - SA NPPO issues import permit

    • Commercial quantities

      • Importer submit extensive information to SA NPPO

      • Pest risk analysis with possible pre-import inspection and registration of open/ outside quarantine site/facility

      • SA NPPO issue import permit and protocol to importer

  • The supplier or exporter must apply for a phytosanitary certificate from the NPPO of the source country the supplier or exporter must present the goods to the NPPO of the source country for evaluation and inspection

  • The NPPO of the source country then issues a phytosanitary certificate if the goods pass evaluation and inspection. The supplier or exporter exports the goods within 14 days of the final inspection the supplier or exporter ensures that the goods are accompanied by the original phytosanitary certificate

  • Plant inspectors from SA NPPO detain goods for evaluation and inspection

    • The importer must clear all documents with Customs at the Port of Entry in South Africa goods are released or

    • Post entry quarantine according to management plan