Outline of the system
Import licensing system is regulated by the Trade Act Cap. 91:01 which also establishes the list of goods subject to import licensing. The licensing system is administered by the Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce.
Imports of the products listed in the attached Third Schedule of the Trade Act Cap. 91:01 are subject to automatic/non-automatic licensing (See products).
Nature of licensing
If Automatic, administrative purpose
Automatic licensing is maintained for statistical purposes.
If Non-Automatic, description of the notified Non-Automatic Licensing regime
Non-automatic import licensing is maintained for the purposes provided for in the Agreement.
Products under restriction as to the quantity or value of imports
Automatic licensing is maintained for statistical purposes. Non-automatic import licensing is maintained for the purposes provided for in the Agreement.
Questions for products under restriction as to the quantity or value of imports
Please see Answers 6.1-6.11.
The system applies to products originating from which country?
The system applies to goods originating in and coming from all countries except the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). Guyana is a member state of CARICOM.
Expected duration of licensing procedure
Is the licensing statutorily required?
The import licensing system is regulated by the Trade Act Cap. 91:01 and may be amended only by the authority of a Ministerial Order issued for that purpose under the said Act.
Does the legislation leave designation of products to be subject to licensing to administrative discretion?
Is it possible for the government to abolish the system without legislative approval?
Eligibility of applicants
Is there a system of registration of persons or firms permitted to engage in importation?
What persons or firms are eligible to apply for a licence?
All persons, firms and institutions are eligible to apply for licences.
Is there a registration fee?
Is there a published list of authorized importers?
Contact point for information on eligibility
Submission of an application
Administrative body(ies) for submission of an application
Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce
What information is required in applications?
A sample application form is attached (see Attachment III ). An importer is required to obtain the prior endorsement of his application by the relevant agency before submitting same to the Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce (see Attachment II).
What documents is the importer required to supply with the application?
Window of submission of an application
How far in advance of importation must application for a licence be made?
Application for a licence must be submitted to the Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce prior to the importation of the goods.
Are there any limitations as to the period of the year during which application for licence can be made? If so, explain
There are no limitations as to the period of the year during which application for licence may be made.
Issuing the license
Can a licence be granted immediately on request?
Under certain circumstances, a licence can be granted immediately on request.
Can licences be obtained within a shorter time-limit or for goods arriving at the port without a licence
An importer should obtain a licence prior to the arrival of any of the product(s) covered under the Third Schedule of the Trade Act, Cap. 91:01.
Which administrative body is responsible for approving application of licences?
Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce
Must the applications be passed on to other organs for visa, note or approval?
An importer may have to consult with more than one administrative organ depending on the products to be imported (see Attachment II).
Are there any other conditions attached to the issue of a licence?
There are no conditions attached to the issuance of a licence.
Fees and other administrative charges
Is there any licensing fee or administrative charge?
There is no fee related to the processing of applications.
What is the amount of the fee or charge?
There is no fee related to the processing of applications.
Is there any deposit or advance payment required associated with the issue of licences?
There is no deposit or advance payment requirement associated with the issuance of licence.
Amount or rate?
Is it refundable?
What is the period of retention?
What is the purpose of this requirement?
Refusal of an application
Under what circumstances may an application for a licence be refused other than failure to meet the ordinary criteria?
Are the reasons for any refusal given to applicants?
In the event an application is refused (not approved), this is indicated to the applicant in writing.
Have applicants a right of appeal in the event of refusal to issue a licence?
If so, to what bodies and under what procedures?
Are there any limitations as to the period of year during which importation may be made?
There are no limitations as to the period of the year during which importation may be made.
What documents are required upon actual importation?
Upon actual importation, an importer is required to submit the approved import licence or a certified copy thereof.
Are there any other administrative procedures, apart from import licensing and similar administrative procedures, required prior to importation?
There are no other administrative procedures, apart from import licensing required prior to importation.
Conditions of licensing
What is the period of validity of a licence? Can the validity be extended? How?
Almost all licences are valid for six months from the date of issue. At the expiry of this period the validity can be extended if the applicant so requests. The two exceptions to this are frozen meat products, for which one month licences are issued that are valid for only one shipment, and for arms and for ammunition, for which licences are valid until the end of the calendar year.
Is there any penalty for the non-utilization of a licence or a portion of a licence?
There is no penalty for non-utilisation of a licence or a portion of it.
Are licences transferable between importers? If so, are any limitations or conditions attached to such transfer?
Licences are not transferable between importers.
Is foreign exchange automatically provided by the banking authorities for goods to be imported?
Foreign exchange is automatically provided by the banking authorities for goods to be imported.
Is a licence required as a condition to obtaining foreign exchange?
Is foreign exchange always available to cover licences issued?
What formalities must be fulfilled for obtaining the foreign exchange?
The following questions are only for products under restriction as to the quantity or value of imports (whether applicable globally or to a limited number of countries or whether established bilaterally or unilaterally)
Where is information on allocation and formalities for licences published? Is the overall amount published? The amount allocated to goods from each country? The maximum amount allocated to each importer? How to request any exceptions or derogations from the licensing requirement?
There are no quotas. Information relating to formalities of filing applications for licences, exceptions and derogations are available upon request at the responsible Ministry (Government agency).
Is the size of the quota determined: on yearly, six-monthly or quarterly basis? Are there cases where the size of quota is determined on a yearly basis but licences are issued for imports on a six-monthly or quarterly basis? In the latter case, is it necessary for importers to apply for a fresh licence on a six-monthly or quarterly basis?
Are licences allocated for certain goods partly or only to domestic producers of like goods? What steps are taken to ensure that licences allocated are actually used for imports? Are unused allocations added to quotas for a succeeding period? Are names of importers to whom licences have been allocated made known to governments and export promotion bodies of exporting countries upon request? If not, for what reason? (Indicate products to which replies relate)
Licences are issued to importers regardless of whether they are producers of like products. There is no regulation or restriction regarding the utilisation or non-utilisation of licences.
From the time of announcing the opening of quotas, as indicated in I above, what is the period of time allowed for the submission of applications for licences?
What are the minimum and maximum lengths of time for processing applications?
Applications for licences are processed within two working days.
How much time remains, at a minimum, between the granting of licences and the date of opening of the period of importation?
An importer should have a licence prior to the arrival of any of the product(s) covered under the Third Schedule of the Trade Act, Cap. 91:01.
Is consideration of licence applications effected by a single administrative organ? Or must the application be passed on to other organs for visa, note or approval? If so, which? Does the importer have to approach more than one administrative organ?
Import licence applications for some products may require the prior clearance of other agencies before the final issuance by the Ministry of Tourism, Industry and Commerce. (See Attachment II).
If the demand for licences cannot be fully satisfied, on what basis is the allocation to applicants made? First come, first served? Past performance? Is there a maximum amount to be allocated per applicant and if so, on what basis is it determined? What provision is made for new importers? Are applications examined simultaneously or on receipt?
Any importer is eligible for a licence subject to the requirements. There are no laid down criteria based on performance or quotas.
In the case of bilateral quotas or export restraint arrangements where export permits are issued by exporting countries, are import licences also required? If so, are licences issued automatically?
There are no bilateral quotas or export restraint arrangements. Export permits from exporting countries are not required.
In cases where imports are allocated on the basis of export permits only, how is the importing country informed of the effect given by the exporting countries to the understanding between the two countries?
Export permits from exporting countries are not required.
Are there products for which licences are issued on condition that goods should be exported and not sold in the domestic market?
No licences are issued on condition that goods should be exported and not sold in the domestic market.