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Privileges and Immunities for Foreign Diplomats are governed by the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 1961 as well as the Diplomatic and Consular Immunities and Privileges Act, No. 5 of 1986.
1.INTRODUCTION

Diplomatic Privileges and Immunities

Privileges and Immunities for Foreign Diplomats are governed by the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 1961 as well as the Diplomatic and Consular Immunities and Privileges Act, No. 5 of 1986.

Consular Offices are covered under the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and the Diplomatic and Consular Privileges and Immunities Act No. 5 of 1986. Such privileges are similar to those accorded to members of the Diplomatic Staff.

The Ministry will also be guided by other Convections such as the General Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the African Union (AU), the Convention on the Privileges and Immunities of the United Nations together with other International Instruments to which Tanzania is a party.

2. PROCEDURE FOR THE COMMENCEMENT AND TERMINATION OF A DIPLOMATIC TOUR OF DUTY TO THE UNITED REPUBLIC OF TANZANIA

Notification of Arrivals

In accordance with Article 10 of the Vienna Convection on Diplomatic Relations, the appointment and arrival of any member of a Foreign Mission, family members and private servants must be notified by the Mission to the Protocol Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co - operation by a Verbal Note, prior to their arrival in Tanzania.

A new Ambassador/High Commissioner including Non-Resident Heads of mission shall be met on His/Her arrival in Tanzania by a representative of the Protocol Department provided that travel arrangements and itinerary is communicated in advance to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation.

Presentation of Credentials

A new Ambassador/High Commissioner is obligated to present a copy of his/ her Letters of Credence to the Honourable Minister for Foreign Affairs before the official presenting his/her Letters of Credentials and the predecessor’s Letters of Recall to the Excellency President The Chief of Protocol shall notify the Ambassadors/High Commissioner the date and time for his/her audience with the Honourable Minister and the presentation of credential ceremony with the His Excellency President.

The dress code for the presentation of credential ceremony shall be:
• Gentlemen - Dark Suit or Traditional Dress/Uniform
• Ladies - Formal/Traditional Dress

Departure Formalities upon Completion of Tour of Duty

- On completion of a tour of duty, Heads of Mission and Mission Staff should notify in writing the Protocol Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation thirty [30] days prior to the date of their impending departure.
- The departing Ambassador/High Commissioner shall be seen off at the airport by a representative of the Protocol Department.
- Mission are expected to inform the Protocol Division of their departing staff members in advance giving names and ranks prior to their final departure.
- Identity cards, and air port passes for departing heads of mission and other members of mission must be returned to the Protocol Division of the ministry of Foreign Affairs, within seven days of the date of departure.

Official Calls
The Protocol Department shall assist in making appointments for customary call on for the incoming Ambassador/High Commissioner on His Excellency the President, the Vice President, the Prime Minister and the President of Zanzibar.

3. VISAS, RESIDENCE PERMITS, IDENTITY CARDS, WORK PERMITS, AIRPORT PASSES AND USE OF VIP LOUNGE

Visas

According to the practice of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the following persons are regarded as family members as referred to in Article 37 of the Vienna Convection on Diplomatic Relations:
i. Spouses.
ii. Unmarried dependant children under 18.
iii. Unmarried dependant children who are physically or mentally disabled.
iv. Parents forming part of the household of the Diplomatic agent.

Members of missions of countries whose nationals are required to hold visas for entering Tanzania must apply for visas for themselves, their family members as well as dependants accompanying them. An application for a visa should be made at the appropriate Tanzania Mission well in advance of their departure for Tanzania.

Prior to the Officers arrival in Tanzania, Missions are required to submit a Verbal Note to the Protocol Department together with a duly filled - in application form, three passport size photographs and a valid passport copy of the applicant. Residence permits are valid for a period of two years, and have to be renewed thereafter.

Visa on arrival arrangement is not applicable to Diplomats and Staff of International Organizations.

There are three categories of identity cards:-

- BROWN - For Members of the Diplomatic Staff and their family members and certain categories of Officials of International Organizations.
- GREEN - For members of administrative and technical staff of missions and their family members.
- YELLOW - For Mission’s Service Staff (drivers, cooks etc).

Changes of the rank of mission personnel should be notified to the Protocol Department in order to effect amendments to the Diplomatic List.

Work Permits for Spouses

Staff members of a Mission shall be permitted to undertake remunerative work in Tanzania on the following conditions:
- That there exists a bilateral agreement between Tanzania and the sending State to undertake such remunerative employment.

- That the local authorities have satisfied themselves that there is no suitable local person to be employed to such a position. Work permit for family members will only be granted if such skills are not locally available.

- An application should be made to the Protocol Division. Once the Ministry agrees to the request, the person concerned will automatically forfeit his/her diplomatic status and privileges as regards issues relating to employment. Furthermore, he/she shall be subjected to civil and administrative jurisdiction, in case of dispute arising from activities directly related to the employment in question.

Airport Passes

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation issues two airport passes for the use of the Head of Mission and his/her spouse to use the VIP Lounge on reciprocal basis. Temporary entry to other parts of the airports may be granted upon request to airport management. Such requests must be submitted through the Protocol Department three days in advance excluding weekends and public holidays.

Use of the Airport VIP Lounge

Access to the VIP Lounge is restricted. The use of the VIP Lounge is permissible to the personal use of the Heads of Missions and their spouses. Children are not expected to use the VIP Lounge. With the exception of first arrival and final departure at the end of a tour of duty, when a Head of Mission is expected to be welcomed and seen off by the Staff of his Mission and colleagues in the Diplomatic Community, Heads of Missions are expected to be accompanied by not more than one person when using the VIP Lounge.

The concerned Embassy/Mission should seek prior authorization of the Protocol Department of the Ministry whenever the Head of Mission requires the use of the VIP Lounge to receive any visitors and guests. Due to space limitation other members of the family, when traveling on their own, will not be permitted to use the VIP Lounge.

Requests for the use of VIP Lounge should be communicated to the Protocol Department at least 72 hours in advance.

4. CONSUL GENERAL OFFICES

Under Article 71 para 1 of the Vienna Convection on Consular Relations, Honorary Consuls only enjoy immunity from jurisdiction and personal inviolability of official acts performed in the exercise of their functions.

A Consul General should call on the Chief of the Protocol after his arrival in Tanzania. The latter will arrange for him/her to present her letters of Appointment/Commission to the Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

5. TAXATION

General information on taxes is obtainable from the Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA). Taxation of the Heads of Mission and staff members of Diplomatic Missions and Consular Posts in Tanzania is governed by the Diplomatic and Consular Immunities and Privileges Act No. 5 of 1986, Immunities and Privileges (Taxes and Duties) order, GN 120 of 1975 and the VAT Act, No. 24 of 1997.

Income Tax Privileges

Persons serving in Tanzania at Foreign Diplomatic Missions and consular posts headed by Consular officers, as well as members of their families and their private servants who are not Tanzanian nationals, are exempted from income tax for all income rising out of their status.

Tanzanian Nationals or persons permanently resident in Tanzania serving at Foreign Diplomatic Missions and Consular posts are not entitled to tax exemptions.

Property Tax

The premises of Diplomatic Missions and consular posts, including the residence of the Head of Mission or the residence of the Head of Consular post are exempt from tax to the extent provided for in the Vienna Convections on Diplomatic Relations having force of law in Tanzania as provided under the Diplomatic and Consular Immunities and Privileges Act No. 5 of 1986.

VALUE ADDED TAX (VAT)

General observations:
Value Added Tax (VAT) in Tanzania is charged on the supply of goods and services in mainland Tanzania and on the importation of goods or services from any place outside mainland Tanzania made on and after the 1st day of July, 1998. VAT is charged at the rate of 20 per Centrum of taxable value. Under S.11 and third Scheduled of the VAT Act, of 1997, based on the principle of reciprocity, diplomats are entitled to relief from VAT, on acquisitions made by:-
- Diplomatic and corresponding missions and the offices of career consuls for official use.
- Diplomatic representatives, career consuls and family members belonging to their households, for personal use.
- Diplomatic representatives, career consuls and family members, belonging to their households, when settling in Tanzania. Missions and their privileged staff are advised to make their purchases from registered VAT traders so as to be refunded by the Tanzania Revenue Authority. Purchases can also be made from duty free shops and bonded warehouses where products are sold free from any tax or duty.

6. PROCEDURE FOR OBTAINING TAX REFUND AND RELIEF

Missions and personnel will get tax refund from Tanzania Revenue Authority, once per month with the approval of the Protocol Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation.

In effecting duty free purchases, Diplomatic Missions and their non - Tanzania personnel are required to fill in PRO 6 forms available from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Tanzanian citizens employed in International Organizations in the professional category as officers or advisers are exempted from paying customs duties. Such personnel should also use the PRO 6 forms for clearance of articles they import when goods are allowed to be imported free of customs duties as explained above; they are also exempt from other indirect taxes collected on importation, e.g. Value added tax and excise duty.

The exemption from customs duty and excise duty also applies to goods which are purchased in tax free customs warehouse or other bonded warehouses (these goods are usually imported by importing agents or companies). In such case, VAT is refunded upon application.

The PRO 6 form shall contain the following information:-
- end user of the goods
- description of the goods
- signs and serial numbers of the items
- value of the items
Country of purchase.

If the goods are to be received by a person other than the head of the mission or consulate, the letter is to sign the application, as required by the customs, in acknowledgement of having seen it. After establishing the consignee’s entitlement to immunity from taxation and having regard with the principle of reciprocity, if applicable, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs stamps its seal of approval directly on the application form, after which it is returned to the applicant together with two copies of the list of goods.

When a mission takes the goods from the a provision depot for its official use, a provision declaration in these copies must be filled in. The copy for the customs office should indicate the date and number of the PRO 6 form issued by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. The control copy, which has to bear the missions stamp and acknowledgement of receipt, is certified by the Ministry and forwarded by the depot manager to the customs office, together with a copy of the invoice addressed to the mission.

If for any reason exempted goods are sold or imported a non - entitled person/s the customs and other duties chargeable on the goods upon importation must be paid as required by regulations in force at the time of the customs declaration irrespective of the time they have been used.

For all local purchases by mission and international organizations Form VAT 222 will be utilized and may be obtained from the ministry of Foreign Affairs, Protocol Division

Other entitled personnel will use their Diplomatic identity cards while making purchases from VAT registered traders whereby they will be provided with VAT from 207 for the purpose of refund.


7. REGISTRATION OF MOTOR VEHICLES FOR DIPLOMATIC MISSIONS AND INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATIONS:

The Ministers new Diplomatic License Plates in the following:

- (Yellow on Green) in the series 1- 255 in alphabetical order for Diplomatic Missions and Consular Offices;
- (White on Blue) series 200-399 for International and Regional Organizations.

OTHER EXEMPTIONS

i. Missions together with Members of Missions are exempted from payment of motor vehicles registration fees and road licenses. Exemption is granted upon application to the Chief of Protocol of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, by filling PRO 6 forms. However, missions are obliged to pay road toll (road fund).
ii. Members of Mission are exempted from the payment of all arms licence fees payable under the arms control Act of 1991.
iii. Non-resident Ambassadors accredited to the United Republic of Tanzania and residing in neighbouring countries are exempted from registration fees. However such envoys like other heads of missions or staff are required to pay road toll (road fund).
iv. Missions and members of Missions are however third party insurance cover for motor vehicles is mandatory.

PRIVILEGES AND IMMUNITIES GRANTED TO CERTAIN INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATIONS

The Diplomatic and Consular Immunities and Privileges Act also provides for privileges and immunities of certain International Organizations. The following exemptions are granted under S.13 to 16 of part (iv) the said Act.

Representational Staff of Diplomatic Missions together with the representatives of International Organizations and their deputies in Tanzania are exempted from payment of customs duties, on goods of foreign origin imported into the country for the personal use of such officer and his/her family, however other officials of international organizations are exempted from payment of customs duties, and excise duty for personal effect, including one motor vehicle imported within twenty four (24) months of first arrival into the country.

(i) Tanzanian citizens working in International Organizations as Directors or Deputy Directors of Resident Directors are exempted, from personal tax and income tax in respect of emoluments received as officials of such organizations.

(ii) Tanzanian citizens employed in international organizations in a general or professional category as officers or advisers are exempted from payment of custom duty.

(iii) Other privileges for Tanzanian citizens working in International Organizations will be considered when amendments to the relevant provisions of Act No. 5 of 1986 will be affected.