Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Right-hand drive vehicle owners get final reminder

Right-hand drive vehicle owners get final reminder

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Owners of right-hand drive vehicles come to register and pay taxes for their trucks in July. GDCE

Right-hand drive vehicle owners get final reminder

The General Department of Customs and Excise (GDCE) has again reminded the owners of right-hand drive (RHD) vehicles to register by July 31, warning that they can be confiscated should the deadline be missed.

Many owners of RHD vehicles had registered those remaining in the country without needing to modify the position of the steering wheel, according to the department’s announcement on July 25.

This follows the decision of Prime Minister Hun Sen regarding the collection of import taxes and value-added tax (VAT) on unregistered RHD vehicles.

From July 1-24, a total of 4,854 RHD vehicles had been registered, some of which had already fulfilled their import tax and VAT obligations.

The GDCE also for the final time called on those who had not registered to meet the July 31 deadline to avail of the opportunity to pay import tax and VAT without the need to modify the vehicle or face penalties.

For the owners of registered ones, the department has given until October 8 to pay import tax and VAT.

“Vehicles that are not registered by this deadline will be considered as non-existent vehicles in the country – newly smuggling vehicles – which are subject to being seized in accordance with applicable laws and regulations,” it stressed.

GDCE spokesman Keam Chankosal told The Post on July 26 that it had been difficult to identify unregistered RHD vehicles as many had previously been smuggled into Cambodia.

Chankosal said RHD vehicles had in the past been illegally imported to avoid import tax, while sometimes traders had imported the parts and assembled the cars locally, which made them difficult to keep track of.

“This is what makes it difficult for us to identify all these vehicles. We had estimated that there might be about 1,000 vehicles being registered after the decision by Prime Minister Hun Sen. But more than 4,000 vehicles have currently been registered, so there were far more than we thought,” he said.

However, he said that after the July 31 deadline, they would have a more accurate figure, as any remaining unregistered RHD vehicles would be considered illegal and be confiscated in accordance with the law.

“We are calling on the owners of the remaining RHD vehicles to register because we want to know the true number of such vehicles. We cannot provide more time because unprincipled traders would take the opportunity to smuggle more vehicles or spare parts for assembly here,” Chankosal said.

Sok Panha, the owner of a car dealership in Phnom Penh, said he believed the current action by the government brought a lot of benefits, such as the collection of taxes into the state coffers.

He said it would also contribute to the elimination of illegal vehicle imports into Cambodia to make the automobile market more transparent and competitive.

According to the GDCE, as of June 30 – the previous deadline for existing unpaid import tax and VAT – the department collected $76 million, with 9,753 vehicles having been hidden under false number plates, while the owners of 7,040 RHD vehicles had paid the taxes.

According to the latest figures, from July 1-18, a total of 2,060 vehicle were registered, of which 1,029 had paid import tax and VAT, while the owners of 15 left-hand drive vehicles had paid tax.

Therefore, about 17.79 billion riel (approximately $4.35 million) had been collected in import tax and VAT from the owners of RHD and left-hand drive vehicles.


  • Siem Reap drain canal now ‘mangrove’ promenade

    A more than half a kilometre long stretch of canal in Siem Reap has been covered and turned into a promenade to attract visitors, said Ly Rasmey, secretary of state at the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, on September 16. The new pedestrianised

  • Typhoon Noru brings flash floods – 16 dead

    An official warned that that the 16th typhoon of the season, Noru, had brought heavy rains to areas the Mekong River and flooded thousands of homes in the provinces bordering Thailand. As of September 27, the death toll from the flooding had risen to 16. National Committee

  • Angkor wildlife, aquarium park still to open October

    The Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium complex about 30km southeast of Siem Reap town with initial total investment of more than $70 million is reportedly still on track for an end-October opening. The park is located on a 100ha plot along National Road 6 in Kbon village, Khchas

  • Final verdicts for Khmer Rouge leaders ‘vital’ for next generation

    Nearly a decade after the commencement of Case 002/02 against Khieu Samphan back in 2014, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) is now set to deliver its final verdict for the former Khmer Rouge head of state. The Supreme Court Chamber of the ECCC,

  • Defence minister reaffirms Kingdom’s staunch support for One-China policy

    Minister of National Defence General Tea Banh has reaffirmed Cambodia’s unwavering support for the One-China policy. Tea Banh was speaking at the September 20 ceremonial handover of 117 vehicles and other military equipment donated by China’s defence ministry, held at Phnom Chumreay International Military Training

  • Deaths due to ‘lifestyle’ diseases rise in Kingdom

    The Ministry of Health has called on people to pay closer attention to their health to protect themselves from non-communicable diseases (NCDs) which it said have caused high rates of deaths in the country. Ministry secretary of state York Sambath made the call at a