Temporary Importation Procedure for non-EU yacht owners
Any yacht spending more than 6 months in any calendar year cruising in EU VAT zone waters may be liable to EU VAT in the place of effective importation, irrespective of its ownership. Where, however, a yacht is imported into EU waters with the intention of re-exporting it may be temporarily brought into the EU and used for private purposes without customs duties or VAT being paid on the value of that yacht. This procedure may only be availed of by non-EU nationals.
The temporary importation procedure enables the yacht to stay within the EU for 18 months and can move freely within its territorial waters with no further customs formalities during this period. If the boat is laid up for any period of time it is also possible to disregard such laid up period for the purpose of reckoning the 18-month period. Where the temporary importation is effected in Malta, the customs authorities will require the provision of a security or guarantee, which may be capped by agreement with the customs authorities, to cover the payment of the customs duties and VAT that become due if the yacht does not leave the EU customs territory after the operative period.