"Effective from 5 October 2011, the rules have changed to make it easier for foreign boat owners who visit Norway to leave their boats here for the winter and continue their voyage along the coast the following spring," says Louise Holtoug Amundsen, Assistant Director of the Customs and VAT Section of the Norwegian Directorate of Customs and Excise.
Previously, foreign boat owners could not leave their boat in Norway for more than six weeks, without having to store it in a formally approved custom's warehouse.
Up to two years
The Directorate of Customs and Excise has amended the rules so that foreign boat owners can now lay up their boats in private marinas for up to one year.
"Boat owners must apply to Norwegian Customs and Excise (Tollvesenet) for permission beforehand. At the end of one year, boat owners can apply for permission to leave their boat in Norway for another year, if necessary," explains Holtoug Amundsen.
Since boat owners have to seek prior permission from Norwegian Customs and Excise to lay up a boat, the new system still satisfies Customs and Excise's need for overview and collection of taxes and customs duties.
A special application form for boat storage has been prepared, as well as guidelines for how the customs regions shall apply the rules in practice.
The regulations have already been adopted, and the customs regions are ready to start receiving applications from 5 October. Interested boat owners should contact the appropriate customs region directly.
The proposed new regulations were presented in July, and the deadline for comment was 29 August.
"We received only positive feedback on the proposal in the consultation round. Now the rules have been adopted and are in place ready for the coming winter season," says Louise Holtoug Amundsen.