The UAE Government bans the entry of certain goods and restricts some others. Banned/prohibited goods are those whose import and export is banned under the Common Customs Law of the GCC States (PDF, 567 KB), or any other law or regulation applicable in the UAE.
Restricted goods are goods whose import and export is restricted under the same law above and applicable regulations, and they need prior approval from the authorities concerned prior to import or export.
Banned items include, but are not limited to:
- controlled/recreational drugs and narcotic substances
- pirated content
- counterfeit currency
- items used in black magic, witchcraft or sorcery
- publications and artwork that contradict or challenge Islamic teachings and values
- gambling tools and machines.
The following list outlines restricted goods along with their respective controlling authorities:
Live animals, plants, fertilizers, and pesticides
Ministry of Climate Change and Environment
Weapons, ammunition, explosives and fireworks
Ministry of Defence
Ministry of Interior
Medicines, drugs, and medical equipment, devices and tools
Ministry of Health and Prevention
Media publications and products
Ministry of Culture and Youth
Nuclear energy products
Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation
Transmission and wireless devices
Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority
Ministry of Interior/
Cosmetics and personal care products
eCigarettes and electronic hookah
Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology
New vehicle tyres
Find more information on banned and restricted commodities:
Forms of smuggling and penalties
Forms of smuggling include:
- failing to report to the first customs department with items when entering the UAE
- not disclosing any commercially-oriented items in their possession
- taking items out from the customs department without declaring them
- presenting forged documents or using false indicators to avoid paying customs duties or bypass regulations on banned or restricted goods
- transporting or possessing banned or restricted items without providing legitimate import evidence
- concealing items.
The penalty for smuggling can result in fines and or imprisonment and the confiscation of smuggled items and tools.
The UAE levies import and export duties on commercial goods.