Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Export Certification Process Outlined

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The general import/export process:

The importing country normally prepares the requirements for any commodity imported into their country.   These requirements are put in place in an attempt to safeguard the animal health and disease situation of the importing country, by mitigating the risk of introducing disease as far as possible.  These rules/requirements/conditions are usually collated into an import permit with health conditions.


It is the exporting country’s responsibility to certify that the consignment complies with the requirements/health conditions set out by the importing country in the import permit.  A provincial State Veterinarian in the exporting country is usually responsible for certifying compliance with the import requirements of the importing country, before the consignment leaves the exporting country. Unfortunately, the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries does not keep a database of all import requirements of other countries, since it would be logistically impossible to keep track of all the ever-changing requirements for every animal commodity; especially since any of the requirements can be changed at any time without prior notice.


For exports out of South Africa, the importer in the importing country will need to apply for an import permit from the Veterinary Authorities of the importing country.  Once the permit has been obtained, the importer will need to send the Veterinary Import Permit/annex/import requirements or a copy thereof to the exporter in exporting country.  The exporter should then contact their local provincial South African State Veterinarian to discuss the export certification of the consignment.  South Africa becomes the exporting country, responsible for certifying compliance with the import requirements of the importing country.


Also attached the Export Certification Poster for your information.


For more information, contact


Import Export Policy Unit


Directorate Animal Health


Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries


Tel:         012 319 7536


Fax:        012 329 6892