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How to get an export license in Jamaica?

How to get an export license in Jamaica? || Answered by Aneisha Dobson, Associate Writer

Brand Jamaica has a way of leaving you in a state nostalgia. For instance, a shirt with an image of Bob Marley reminds you of your favourite song, and a bottle of Appleton Rum reminds you of the amazing night you shared with your friends at a bar.

It is, in part, this nostalgic feeling that propels individuals to purchase authentic Jamaican products, especially the Jamaican diaspora.

Other than the nostalgic feeling, however, there are just some products that you won’t find anywhere else than Jamaica.

For instance, our world famous Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee.

Due to this high demand of Jamaican products many are exported to other countries around the world so they too can have a taste of the island.

Additionally, with the advent of various Bilateral and Multilateral Trade Agreements, exporters stand to benefit from tariff exemption or reductions.

However, not all items enjoy these benefits. The context of each trade agreement would stipulates the goods that qualify for these benefits.

Now, on to the main reason why you’re here. Getting your export licence.

An export licence is basically a document that indicates that the government has granted the licensee the right to export specified goods to specified countries.

If you’re interested in shipping a specific Jamaican product to countries around the world, you’ll may need an export license.

Now, before I begin to advice on how you can get your export license, you must note that this is geared towards those individuals who plan to export commercially.

That simply means that they export in exchange for revenue. Therefore, the export will result in revenue generation.

So, if you are exporting for personal or non-commercial reasons that will not result in any revenue generation, then you are not required to obtain an export licence.

Additionally, an important agency that you should get acquainted with is the Trade Board Ltd. It is the responsibility of The Trade Board to issue import and export licences for certain items that may impact the environmental, social and economic aspects of the country in a manner that is consistent with the International obligations of the World Trade Organization Agreement for Import Licences.

Now, let’s jump right into the process, How to get an export license in Jamaica.

  1. The first thing that you must consider is the type of product that you’re exporting. “Why?” you ask. Well, only specific export products require an export licence.

    Currently, only eighteen products require an export licence in Jamaica, namely:

    • Scrap Metal (Incl. Scrap Batteries)
    • Scrap Gold/Silver
    • Coffee
    • Pimento
    • Live animals
    • Endangered Species
    • Brown sugar
    • Petroleum Oils
    • Ammunition (explosives and firearms)
    • Eggs (N.O.P.)
    • Antique furniture
    • Ores – Minerals and metals including Bauxite, Alumina and Gypsum
    • Paintings (antique)
    • Plasma – in any form
    • Wood – Lignum vitae and log wood only
    • Motor Vehicles
    • Jewelry (Excluding those from earth metals)
    • Shells (subject to Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species administered by NEPA)

  2. The second thing that you need to take note of is gathering the necessary documentation.

    There is an export licence application form that you’ll need to complete. Some information that will be provided on this application are:

    • Your address of business
    • The destination of the export product
    • The quantity and description of the export product
    • Price of the sold export product
    • Type and currency of the payment, etc.

    You can get this form at the office or on the website:

    In addition to the application form, there are some supporting documents that you’ll also need to submit along with it. This is where things get a little tricky.


    Well, that’s because all export items require different documentation.

    For instance, if you plan on exporting coffee then you will need an approval from the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries. Whereas, if you were exporting ores, such as Bauxite, Alumina and Gypsum you’ll need an approval letter from the Ministry of Energy and Mining.

    So, it all comes back to what you’re exporting. For the full list of supporting documents click the following link that will take to the Jamaica Trade Board’s website:

    It must be noted that as of September 1, 2017, all supporting documents for license application must be sent (emailed) to

  3. After submitting your documents, everything is left in the hands of the Jamaica Trade Board Ltd.

    At this stage the processing officers will now critique the information submitted against the information on their system.

    The Processing Officer main responsibility at this stage is to ensure that the exported items comply with regulations governing exportation. They may also want to inspect the prospective export items.

  4. Once they, the Processing Officer, find no fault with your application, supporting document and the export product, you will be granted your export licence.

    You should also take note that the Trade Board will not process incomplete applications. The Trade Board regards an application as complete once it has been is paid for and all relevant supporting documents submitted.

Contact The Trade Board

If you want more information, you can visit the Trade Board Limited at:

10th Floor
Air Jamaica Building
72 Harbour Street

You may also call or email them at:

Tel: 876-967-0507
Fax: 876-948-7486

Visit their website at:

I hope this helped!

What do we produce? What are the main drivers of the Jamaican economy? Read our article on the economy of Jamaica for an insight.







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