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Duty Free Shops

Duty Free Shops are licensed premises allowed to store and sell duty free goods to qualified buyers. They were established under Section 65D of the Customs Act 1967 to cater to the necessities and requirements of international tourists.

Background 

Duty Free Shops were established for the first time in Penang following the withdrawal of its free port status towards the end of 1977, with the aim of allowing tourists to gain access of duty free goods in the island.

At the present, Duty Free Shops are located at these premises:

  • International Airports such as Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) Sepang, Bayan Lepas International Airport (Pulau Pinang), Kota Kinabalu International Airport (Sabah) and Kuching International Airport (Sarawak);
  • Ports such as Port Klang (Selangor), Tanjung Belungkor (Johor) and Pengkalan Kubor (Kelantan);
  • Cities such as Kuala Lumpur, Johor Baharu, Penang, Melaka and Kuching;
  • Border stations such as Padang Besar (Perlis), Bukit Kayu Hitam (Kedah), Pengkalan Hulu (Perak), Rantau Panjang (Kelantan) dan Kuala Baram (Sarawak); and
  • Padang Besar Railway Station, Perlis.


Basic Qualification For Duty Free Shops Applicants

Basically, there are five types of Duty Free Shops, that is International Airport Duty Free Shops, Port Duty Free Shops, Downtown Duty Free Shops, Border Duty Free Shops and Domestic Duty Free Shops.

Duty Free Shops at airports and ports can only be set up after prior approval for a commercial space had been obtained from the Airport or Port authority before the application can be approved by the Customs Department.

The establishment of Duty Free Emporiums / Complexes Downtown is subjected to these terms:

  • Opened only to Public Listed companies or Government owned companies;
  • The company's paid-up capital must not be less than RM1 million and the Bumiputera equity hold is not less than 70%; and
  • The width of the commercial space is not less than 25 thousand square feet.


Application To Establish A Duty Free Shop

An application to establish a Duty Free Shop can be done using form JKED 1 and submitted directly to the State Director of Customs where the business will be operated. The following documents need to be attached:

  • Shop / business premise plan (including floor plan) approved by a Chartered Architect.
  • Company Registration Certificate / Memorandum and Articles of Association;
  • Form 24 and Form 49 endorsed by the Company Registrar;
  • Working paper that states the company's 5 year project / plan, sources of finance, target sales turnover etcetera to support the company's application; and
  • Premise site ownership or tenancy agreement letter.


Licence Period And Fees

The Duty Free Shop license is issued by the State Director of Customs of the state where the shop will be operated. The payment rate is RM1200 for two years or part thereof.


Terms Of Licence 

The list of goods to be sold in a Duty Free Shop must get an approval first from the State Director of Customs. Goods that can be sold at Duty Free Shops are listed in Appendix A.

The licensee should furnish the Customs Department with a bank guarantee to cover the duties of goods kept in their premises. The value must cover the amount of customs duty/ tax for the maximum stock allowed to be kept at one time as approved by the State Director of Customs.

Duty Free Shops in the city and Domestic Duty Free Shops' licensees must send the goods bought by tourists to the Customs exit point / place of export and handover the goods to the purchaser in front of the Customs officer on duty at a special counter to prove that the goods will be and had been brought out of the country. If the goods were not proven as having been exported, the licensee is liable to pay customs duty / tax on the goods.

The licensee has to maintain and keep record of the company' sales and account. In cases of missing or unaccounted for goods, the licensee is responsible to pay all customs duty / tax involved to the Customs Department.

Duty Free Shops are prohibited from selling: 

  • To Malaysian citizens except :
    • At Duty Free Shops in airports and ports to passengers and cabin crews who were arriving from or departing abroad.
    • At Duty Free Shops at the border to all persons.
    • At Domestic Duty Free Shops to international tourist, border country pass holder and cabin crew (foreign citizen) who are leaving the country.
  • To purchasers who are not there to purchase in person.
  • To purchasers who are leaving Malaysia by road (except Domestic Duty Free Shops).
  • Liquor and cigarettes to purchasers under 21 years of age and passengers leaving for Singapore by flight (except in transit passengers).
  • Liquor to Muslims.


Duty Free Goods Supply Resource

Duty Free Shop licensees can get their duty free goods supply by these means:

  • importing from another country;
  • from licensed warehouses, free zones and licensed manufacturing warehouses;
  • from excise manufacturers;
  • from sales tax licensees.


Persons Eligible To Buy From Duty Free Shops

Duty Free Shops are allowed to sell duty free goods to:

  • International tourists leaving Malaysia after entering the country using international passports or legal traveling documents, for Downtown Duty Free Shops.
  • Passengers and cabin crew arriving from or departing for abroad, for Duty Free Shops at airports and ports.
  • Anyone, for Duty Free Shops at the border.
  • International tourists, border country pass holder and cabin crew (foreign citizens) leaving for a foreign country, for Domestic Duty Free Shops.​ . 

However, for duty free goods bought at Duty Free Shops in the airport, at the border and at the port and imported into this country, tax need to be paid for purchases that does not fulfill the conditions for exemption under Item 19 Customs Duties (Exemption) Order 1988 and Item 19 Schedule B Sales Tax (Exemption) Order 1980.

Further information regarding Duty Free Shops is available at the nearest Customs Office or :

Royal Malaysian Customs Headquarters,
Customs Division,
Level 4 North, No.3 Persiaran Perdana,
Ministry of Finance Complex,
Precinct 2,
Federal Government Administration Center,
62592 Putrajaya.

Tel.: (603) 8882 2645
Fax: (603) 8889 5866


Appendix A 

List of Dutiable Goods That Are Approved For Sale in a Duty Free Shop :

  • Food products
  • Chocolate, confectionery
  • Liquor, cigarettes, tobaccos
  • Personal care paraphernalia
  • Textiles, wearing apparel, clothing accessories
  • Footwear, headgear
  • Adornment (ceramic/porcelain/glasses)
  • Jewelries
  • Articles of base metal 
  • Typewriter, calculator
  • Electrical appliances
  • Telephone set
  • Audio / video equipments
  • Toys, games
  • Cigarette lighter, ball point pen(plastic)
  • Sports goods
  • Leather goods
  • Television, radio.

 Duty Free Shops are licensed premises allowed to store and sell duty free goods to qualified buyers. They were established under Section 65D of the Customs Act 1967 to cater to the necessities and requirements of international tourists.

Background 

Duty Free Shops were established for the first time in Penang following the withdrawal of its free port status towards the end of 1977, with the aim of allowing tourists to gain access of duty free goods in the island.

At the present, Duty Free Shops are located at these premises:

  • International Airports such as Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) Sepang, Bayan Lepas International Airport (Pulau Pinang), Kota Kinabalu International Airport (Sabah) and Kuching International Airport (Sarawak);
  • Ports such as Port Klang (Selangor), Tanjung Belungkor (Johor) and Pengkalan Kubor (Kelantan);
  • Cities such as Kuala Lumpur, Johor Baharu, Penang, Melaka and Kuching;
  • Border stations such as Padang Besar (Perlis), Bukit Kayu Hitam (Kedah), Pengkalan Hulu (Perak), Rantau Panjang (Kelantan) dan Kuala Baram (Sarawak); and
  • Padang Besar Railway Station, Perlis.


Basic Qualification For Duty Free Shops Applicants

Basically, there are five types of Duty Free Shops, that is International Airport Duty Free Shops, Port Duty Free Shops, Downtown Duty Free Shops, Border Duty Free Shops and Domestic Duty Free Shops.

Duty Free Shops at airports and ports can only be set up after prior approval for a commercial space had been obtained from the Airport or Port authority before the application can be approved by the Customs Department.

The establishment of Duty Free Emporiums / Complexes Downtown is subjected to these terms:

  • Opened only to Public Listed companies or Government owned companies;
  • The company's paid-up capital must not be less than RM1 million and the Bumiputera equity hold is not less than 70%; and
  • The width of the commercial space is not less than 25 thousand square feet.


Application To Establish A Duty Free Shop

An application to establish a Duty Free Shop can be done using form JKED 1 and submitted directly to the State Director of Customs where the business will be operated. The following documents need to be attached:

  • Shop / business premise plan (including floor plan) approved by a Chartered Architect.
  • Company Registration Certificate / Memorandum and Articles of Association;
  • Form 24 and Form 49 endorsed by the Company Registrar;
  • Working paper that states the company's 5 year project / plan, sources of finance, target sales turnover etcetera to support the company's application; and
  • Premise site ownership or tenancy agreement letter.



Licence Period And Fees 

The Duty Free Shop license is issued by the State Director of Customs of the state where the shop will be operated. The payment rate is RM1200 for two years or part thereof.


Terms Of Licence 

The list of goods to be sold in a Duty Free Shop must get an approval first from the State Director of Customs. Goods that can be sold at Duty Free Shops are listed in Appendix A.

The licensee should furnish the Customs Department with a bank guarantee to cover the duties of goods kept in their premises. The value must cover the amount of customs duty/ tax for the maximum stock allowed to be kept at one time as approved by the State Director of Customs.

Duty Free Shops in the city and Domestic Duty Free Shops' licensees must send the goods bought by tourists to the Customs exit point / place of export and handover the goods to the purchaser in front of the Customs officer on duty at a special counter to prove that the goods will be and had been brought out of the country. If the goods were not proven as having been exported, the licensee is liable to pay customs duty / tax on the goods.

The licensee has to maintain and keep record of the company's sales and account. In cases of missing or unaccounted for goods, the licensee is responsible to pay all customs duty / tax involved to the Customs Department.

Duty Free Shops are prohibited from selling: 

  • To Malaysian citizens except :
    • At Duty Free Shops in airports and ports to passengers and cabin crews who were arriving from or departing abroad.
    • At Duty Free Shops at the border to all persons.
    • At Domestic Duty Free Shops to international tourist, border country pass holder and cabin crew (foreign citizen) who are leaving the country.
  • To purchasers who are not there to purchase in person.
  • To purchasers who are leaving Malaysia by road (except Domestic Duty Free Shops).
  • Liquor and cigarettes to purchasers under 21 years of age and passengers leaving for Singapore by flight (except in transit passengers).
  • Liquor to Muslims.


Duty Free Goods Supply Resource

Duty Free Shop licensees can get their duty free goods supply by these means:

  • importing from another country;
  • from licensed warehouses, free zones and licensed manufacturing warehouses;
  • from excise manufacturers;
  • from sales tax licensees.


Persons Eligible To Buy From Duty Free Shops

Duty Free Shops are allowed to sell duty free goods to:

  • International tourists leaving Malaysia after entering the country using international passports or legal traveling documents, for Downtown Duty Free Shops.
  • Passengers and cabin crew arriving from or departing for abroad, for Duty Free Shops at airports and ports.
  • Anyone, for Duty Free Shops at the border.
  • International tourists, border country pass holder and cabin crew (foreign citizens) leaving for a foreign country, for Domestic Duty Free Shops. . 

However, for duty free goods bought at Duty Free Shops in the airport, at the border and at the port and imported into this country, tax need to be paid for purchases that does not fulfill the conditions for exemption under Item 19 Customs Duties (Exemption) Order 1988 and Item 19 Schedule B Sales Tax (Exemption) Order 1980.

Further information regarding Duty Free Shops is available at the nearest Customs Office or :

Royal Malaysian Customs Headquarters,
Customs Division,
Level 4 North, No.3 Persiaran Perdana,
Ministry of Finance Complex,
Precinct 2,
Federal Government Administration Center,
62592 Putrajaya.

Tel.: (603) 8882 2645
Fax: (603) 8889 5866


Appendix A 

List of Dutiable Goods That Are Approved For Sale in a Duty Free Shop :

  • Food products
  • Chocolate, confectionery
  • Liquor, cigarettes, tobaccos
  • Personal care paraphernalia
  • Textiles, wearing apparel, clothing accessories
  • Footwear, headgear
  • Adornment (ceramic/porcelain/glasses)
  • Jewelries
  • Articles of base metal 
  • Typewriter, calculator
  • Electrical appliances
  • Telephone set
  • Audio / video equipments
  • Toys, games
  • Cigarette lighter, ball point pen(plastic)
  • Sports goods
  • Leather goods
  • Television, radio.