Samoa Quarantine Service (SQS) is part of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries (MAF), and the Quarantine (Biosecurity) Act 2005 mandates our work, where we prevent or control the introduction and spread of pests and diseases that could cause significant damage to human beings, animals, plants and other aspects of the environment or economic activities.
Samoa is free from many of the world’s dangerous agricultural and environment changing pests and diseases. And we want to keep it that way. Our rich farm lands, produce a large variety of crops, and livestock farming for our people. Some of our produce and livestock are exported overseas. Food, plants or plants products, animals or animal products from overseas may contain diseases that affect our source of income and food security.
Today however the speed and popularity of air travel has dramatically increased the chances of spreading pests and diseases from other countries to our shores, particularly those plant and animal pests and diseases, and weed species, which could devastate our economy, unique environment, and our way of life.
Our island paradise is constantly under threat and these pests and diseases may travel as hitchhikers with goods that you bring to Samoa. The best advice from Quarantine is – if in doubt leave it at home or declare.
We are also responsible for assisting exporters of primary produce by providing market access opportunities and government-to-government certification for these products.
The Registrar of Pesticides ensures that only registered pesticides are available and in use in Samoa, hence, all imported pesticides must be registered.
The SQS operates a twenty-four-hour, seven-days-a-week service, maintaining a presence at key points for entry of biosecurity risk goods – airports, seaports, cargo depots and the mail centre at Apia.
The SQS works in tandem with other inspection agencies at the border (Immigration, Customs and Health) for a whole-of-government approach to border protection.
We have a wonderful environment, and unique unspoiled way of life, and we are proud to protect it.
Help Us to Protect Samoa from Exotic Pests and Diseases.
This section is involved in carrying out Import Risk Analysis (IRAs) for all new imports as well as reviewing current Available Import Permits. Conduct research on International Health Standards for approved imports, and assist in the implementation of policy advice and develop contact information on market access status with other importing and exporting countries.
Responsible for the registration, regulation and monitoring of all imported pesticides, its sale, safe use, and distribution in Samoa. Enforcement of the Pesticides Regulation 2011 and ensures only high quality pesticides enters Samoa.
Pesticides can be defined to generally include products used for pest, weed and disease control in agriculture, horticulture, public health, stored products, wood and wood products, as well as those used on animals to control external pests and on plants to regulate growth or fruit maturity.
*Please be aware that mosquito coils and Mortein are categorized as household pesticides, so they also apply for an import permit for its importation. Brining in any types of pesticides without going through the proper procedure will result in your item to be seized and destroyed.
Plans, manages, controls, integrates and evaluates the service activities of the Regulatory section which involves:
To increase public awareness on issues related to Samoa’s Biosecurity, and ensure relevant information is relayed appropriately Awareness Section
Carry out day to day public awareness issues, to enhance the information that is put across to various target groups to ensure maximum level of compliance to Quarantine. Main responsibilities include but are not limited to:
Masters of the vessels will be required to fill the Master’s Declaration Form listing all meat and fresh produce on board identifying any animals carried by the vessel and providing information on your refuse and pest management measures.
Filling in the passenger arrival forms of passengers and crew members.
Ensuring all animals is secured on board until Quarantine inspection.
All refuse generated on the vessel is placed in a suitable leak-proof container, with a lid, and the container is securely fastened at all times and kept aboard the Vessel.
Ensure no stores are landed off board unless cleared by the Quarantine official.
International yachts entering Samoa waters are considered to be of a high biosecurity risk and are closely monitored by Quarantine. Hence it is important for yacht owners to be aware of the clearance procedures for yachts and other vessels
Quarantine Clearance Procedures
The master or captain of the yacht must declare to Quarantine the following:
Last port destination and the estimated time of arrival of the vessel
Its immediate preceding port or place of call
The proposed itinerary of the vessel until it leaves Samoa
The presence of any live animal or live plant on the vessel
Any other matter relevant to facilitating biosecurity landing clearance of the yachts that is specified by Quarantine
This above declaration must be made at least 24 hours before the estimated time of arrival.
The vessel master must complete a Master’s Declaration Form declaring all biosecurity risk items on board that are either restricted or prohibited.
Quarantine clearance procedures for container vessels are similar to that of all incoming vessels. This is a reminder to the Importers or Agents of the various container vessels to provide the necessary documents to assist the Quarantine staff in carrying out their work. The Importer are to provide the following:
– Bill of Lading
– Packing List
– Certification for certain agricultural commodities
In the case of an aircraft arrival, disinfection procedures must be followed. This can be achieved either by the aircraft undergoing a residual treatment overseas (documented and presented to the Quarantine Officer on arrival), or the aircraft undergoing “on arrival” insecticide treatment. In all cases it is the responsibility of the aircraft’s owner or the airline to advise Quarantine at least 24 hours prior to arrival of the aircrafts disinfection status, ETA and pre-load passenger numbers. Any cargo carried must also be advised together with full details of each consignment.
All aircraft, passengers and crew and their baggage are to be cleared as per standard operational procedure of Quarantine.
Agricultural Commodity for Export is carried out at the borders, whereby certain export requirements must be met.
Animals in transit undergo an approved Quarantine clearance and are to remain at a designated Quarantine area. All quarantine regulated items in transit requires transit inspection by Quarantine officials. These cargoes are to remain airside, either on the aircraft, or in an approved transitional facility under Quarantine supervision.
All aircraft refuse are to be removed and taken to the transitional storage facility by contracted operators or owner than to incinerator under quarantine supervision.
Plant and Plant Products
Samoa Quarantine has strict requirements on importing plant and plant products, as plant pests and diseases can cause damage to our environment and agriculture. Please note that All Plant Products (fresh/dried/living/dead/large/small/common/rare) must be declared upon arrival and have been issued with an Import Permit into Samoa.
Goods permitted without an Import Permit
An import permit is not required to bring the following goods into Samoa.
Goods permitted with an Import Permit
An Import Permit is required to bring the following goods into Samoa.
New and Used Vehicles and Machinery
All used vehicles and machinery are required to be inspected on arrival, and undergo a water blasting treatment. Importers are advised to arrange for their vehicles and machinery to be thoroughly cleaned of all contamination prior to shipping (e.g. soil, rocks, plant material, seeds, blood, fertilizer, infested or infected wood)
Vehicles and machinery imported inside shipping containers must also have the inside of the container thoroughly cleaned of all previous cargo residues, including dunnage.
If contamination is detected on the new/used vehicle or machinery or the container, further inspection and treatment will take place.
Containers and Personal Effects
Personal effects can range from one small bag or suitcase, to a complete shipping container full of household contents.
Personal effects consignments can be split into two separate types – accompanied and unaccompanied. Accompanied means those consignments where the owner is present with the bag or case at the time of entry. Unaccompanied means those consignments where the owner is not necessarily present at time of entry, or has a Customs Broker acting as clearance agent on their behalf. In both cases a Quarantine risk assessment will be undertaken upon entry.
People with accompanied consignments are required to make an entry declaration on the Passenger Arrival Declaration form. Owners of unaccompanied consignments are required to make an entry declaration on a form supplied by their clearance broker, or at time of application at the Quarantine Office.