Re: [Amel Yacht Owners] Purchasing House batteries in Martinique

Kelly Ran


You may want to call a customs broker or somehow figure out if batteries are exempt from VAT. We were advised that many electrical components (like solar panels and charge controllers) are exempt from the 8.5% vat. Recently we forwarded a bunch of cargo from the US to MQ and paid roughly 2% in VAT. We could not get an itemized receipt for the tax, so we are unsure whether we paid the lesser 2.1% rate on the whole shipment, OR if we were completely exempt for most of the shipment and paid 8.5% on the non-electrical items. 

We were also advised that it's not worth the brokerage fees to initiate the PST process (for tax-free import) unless you are bringing in more than roughly 4000 euro in goods. We were also advised that "yacht in transit" is not a guarantee of anything. 

Shipping from the US will be another issue. You may run into issues trying to air ship lithium ion batteries.

Are you planning on hiring someone to install the batteries? If you are getting other work done, you might want to use the PA process for VAT-free labor and parts. Then you can have your contractor import the batteries themselves and then bill you for it. The break-even threshold is 6000 euro for all labor and parts. (It costs 500 euro to do this process, and VAT would be 8.5%. AFAIK Douglas Yacht Service is the only place in Martinique that is authorized to perform the PA process.)

Good luck
kelly + ryan
sm233 Iteration

On Fri, Dec 28, 2018, 18:27 Ric Gottschalk ric@... [amelyachtowners] <amelyachtowners@... wrote:


Most of the batteries sold in the islands are  made in China, because their much cheaper for the locals. However good  than in the USA batteries, electronics anchors etc are also from China sold in the USA.

I have never found a problem with YIT. They may protest some, but with some urging and the right paperwork (proof of purchase for one ) I always got it.  


From: amelyachtowners@... [mailto:amelyachtowners@...]
Sent: Friday, December 28, 2018 3:04 PM
To: amelyachtowners@...
Subject: RE: [Amel Yacht Owners] Purchasing House batteries in Martinique





Most islands do not recognize YIT. Some require the hiring of an agent to obtain YIT exemptions. This will add to the cost and along with freight will put batteries about 40-50% hirer than USA prices.


In addition, trying to find fresh batteries in the island can prove to be a challenge in itself. Before any battery purchase understand what the manufactures coding is and determin how long they have been on the shelf.




With best regards,





Sailing Vessel - Cream Puff - SM2K - #275

Currently cruising - Santa Marta, Colombia


From: amelyachtowners@... [mailto:amelyachtowners@...]
Sent: Friday, December 28, 2018 1:03 PM
To: 'amelyachtowners@...'
Subject: RE: [Amel Yacht Owners] Purchasing House batteries in Martinique




Generally There is no tax on equipment shipped when marked “yacht in Transit”. Batteries are heavy and may face more scrutiny. Check with DHL too, Things may have changed a little since my visits. You can also get fuel tax free before or after you have checked out of the country.. Helps with Rum budget

Ric Gottschalk

Bali Hai SN



From: amelyachtowners@... [mailto:amelyachtowners@...]
Sent: Friday, December 28, 2018 11:30 AM
To: amelyachtowners@...
Subject: [Amel Yacht Owners] Purchasing House batteries in Martinique



Happy Holidays fellow Amel owners. 


I would like to ask the group for advice on obtaining house batteries in Martinique.  

I am interested in upgrading my batteries to Firefly or some brand of lithium ion, though I doubt that such options would be available in Martinique (perhaps I am wrong? )


Otherwise, I would need to ship them in, though I understand the import tax is significant.  

What have others done in this situation? 


Happy New Year.


SV Soteria #347

currently in North Exumas

Join to automatically receive all group messages.