An Importer is any person who purchases or owns motor fuel or special fuel in another
state or country and transports or delivers or causes the fuel to be transported or delivered
into South Dakota. Importers must be licensed in South Dakota and are responsible for
paying fuel tax to South Dakota on any fuel that enters the state by any means other than a
pipeline, unless the South Dakota tax has already been collected and paid to the State by a
An Exporter is any person who purchases or owns motor fuel or special fuel in South
Dakota and transports or delivers or causes the fuel to be transported or delivered to
another state or country. Exporters must be licensed to do business in South Dakota. In
order to obtain a South Dakota license, the Exporter must first be licensed to collect and
remit taxes or deal in tax-exempt fuel in the state to which he or she intends to export fuel.
Certain penalties may be assessed by law on persons who export fuel from South Dakota
without a valid Exporter license. Penalties may also be assessed on Ethanol Brokers,
Ethanol Producers, Suppliers and Bulk Plant Operators who sell fuel products to a person
who does not have a valid exporter license.
If an Exporter purchases or acquires fuel at a South Dakota terminal and the bill of lading
indicates a destination outside of South Dakota, no fuel tax is charged. However, if the
Exporter later diverts the fuel to a South Dakota destination, the Exporter is required to
remit fuel tax on that diversion. If an Exporter withdraws fuel from bulk storage for
export, upon which South Dakota fuel tax has been paid, they will qualify for a credit.
South Dakota relies on the information that is printed on the bill of lading to determine
taxability of fuel products. The Supplier must bill the customer in accordance with the
destination information that is presented on the bill of lading, and their involvement with
the transaction should end there. If the load is to be diverted, the Importer/Exporter must
prepare or have the Transporter prepare a proper diversion ticket. If a credit of taxes paid
or a refund is due on a diverted load, the Importer/Exporter (not the Supplier) must apply
In short, the following responsibilities apply:
SUPPLIER – remits taxes to South Dakota based on the destination state
information printed out on the bill of lading.
IMPORTER/EXPORTER – responsible for paying taxes or applying for a
refund of taxes that is caused by the diversion of fuel from the original
destination listed on the bill of lading.
Ethanol Blends and Methanol Blends
With the 2009 South Dakota Legislative Session, it was decided to tax all Ethyl Alcohol
and all Methyl Alcohol at the rate of $.08 per gallon plus the $.02 per gallon Tank
Inspection Fee. This was done because of various levels of ethanol blends now seen in the
industry. If an Importer transports an ethanol blend or methanol blend into South
Dakota, the drop load ticket and/or diversion ticket must list the alcohol gallons and