Notice to Industry 72/2010
24 December 2010
Mutual Recognition Initiative – Used Cars from Japan
What is the initiative?
In August 2009, the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) and the Ministry of
Agriculture and Forestry, Biosecurity New Zealand (MAFBNZ), signed a Letter of Agreement to
implement a Mutual Recognition Initiative between Australia and New Zealand (the Initiative).
The Initiative allows for MAFBNZ to undertake inspections on behalf of AQIS, of used cars intended
for export from Japan to Australia, to ensure those vehicles satisfy AQIS biosecurity requirements.
Originally this Initiative was implemented for pre-inspected vehicles entering Australia through the
Port of Brisbane only. Due to the success of the Initiative, it was extended to all Australian
proclaimed ports from 1 July 2010.
The inspection process
All vehicles, whether bound for New Zealand or Australia, undergo a process of cleaning and
inspection managed between MAFBNZ and Industry in Japan.
A green sticker is attached to the right windscreen wiper of an inspected vehicle to indicate that it has
been inspected and passed by MAFBNZ in Japan for export to New Zealand and Australia.
Where a vehicle is not approved for export, a red sticker is applied and the vehicle is directed to be
re-cleaned using methods approved by both countries. Once re-cleaned, the vehicle must be re-
inspected by MAFBNZ. At this point the import requirements and treatments for New Zealand and
Australia differ, please see below for further details.
All used vehicles under this Initiative are subject to a surveillance inspection by AQIS on arrival into
Australia, to verify that the vehicles are free of quarantine risk material.
New Zealand import requirements
MAFBNZ biosecurity legislation and Import Health Standard allow vehicles known to be
contaminated to be shipped to New Zealand, provided the outside of the vehicle is clean and all
indications of contamination have been removed. In these cases, a red sticker will have been applied
and the vehicle will also require mandatory treatment upon arrival into New Zealand, at an additional
cost to the importer. The importer has a choice of heat treatment or fumigation.
Australian import requirements
Australian quarantine legislation and import conditions do not allow vehicles known to be
contaminated to be shipped to Australia. Under the current AQIS/MAFBNZ initiative, the process in
Japan will manage any known contaminated vehicles by re-cleaning using AQIS approved treatment
options which include:
• steam cleaning;
• high pressure cleaning;
• disinfecting; or
Vehicles without green stickers cannot be loaded onto a vessel for export to Australia. If
contamination/infestation cannot be cleaned satisfactorily, vehicles are not to be shipped to Australia.
What will change?
Under the current Initiative, any contaminated vehicles are applied with a red sticker and are unable
to be shipped to Australia in accordance with MAFBNZ treatment options. However, unlike
MAFBNZ, AQIS does not recognise heat treatment or fumigation as a treatment option.
We advise that the current mutual recognition initiative guidelines have been amended. The
amendment recognises the difference in treatment requirements and removes MAFBNZ treatment
options of heat treatment and fumigation for contaminated vehicles that are to be exported to
Australia. The following paragraph now applies:
For vehicles that are to be exported to Australia, insect contamination should be
treated by spot treatment (Pyrethrin based knockdown spray or high volume spray)
and all residual contamination is to be removed and cleaned. In the case of Asian
Gypsy Moth, all egg masses should be removed and the affected area is to be steam
cleaned or sprayed with a residual insecticide, such as Bifenthrin.
Wayne Terpstra Andrew Wilson
National Manager Air & Sea Cargo Assistant Director Cargo Clearance
Australian Quarantine and MAF Biosecurity New Zealand