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BOC launching ‘1-Assessment’ to curb corruption

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By Betheena Kae Unite

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) will launch and implement an electronic system that operates with lesser human intervention in the declaration of imported goods next month to weed out irregularities and corruption.

BOC chief Isidro Lapeña (Alberto Garcia)

BOC chief Isidro Lapeña (Alberto Garcia)

The Enhanced Goods Declaration Verification System (EGDVS), also known as ‘1-Assessment,’ will be launched August 2, Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapena said.

It is a web-based application workflow system that streamlines the process and monitoring of declaration of imported goods.

It operates with lesser human intervention on transactions between stakeholders and Customs personnel, limiting attempts of influence-peddling among stakeholders, Lapena said.

Under the new system, processing of goods declaration will be on first in, first out basis.

“This time, no more VIPs in goods declaration. If everything is in order and you have your documents ready, then nothing prevents you from lodging your entries. We are leveling the playing field for all legitimate importers,” Lapeña said Friday.

The system was first introduced as Goods Declaration Verification System (GDVS) in the Port of Manila and the Manila International Container Port as provided for in Customs Memorandum Order 31-2017 issued in December 2017.

It was implemented upon the Commissioner’s directive to remove the sectioning at the Formal Entry Division (FED) in a bid to end the “suki system” by limiting face-to-face transactions when processing goods declaration at the two major ports.

In the new CMO 10-2018 issued on July 12, 2018, 1-Assessment, or EGDVS as indicated in the CMO, will be implemented at the ports of Subic, Clark and Batangas.

Anti-red tape, smuggling

The 1-Assessment system is also designed to combat red tape and promote transparency and efficiency in the delivery of BOC services.

According to the bureau, the system will provide stakeholders a bias-free assessment of their goods declarations through its zero-contact policy where importers and brokers get actual updates on the status of their respective goods declaration without face-to-face transactions with customs personnel.

Lapena said that it will likewise “minimize corruption attempts at the BOC ports as the opportunity for collusion among clients or stakeholders, customs appraisers and examiners is removed with the random selection of appraisers and examiners to be assigned with goods declaration.”

Lapena said the 1-Assessment system is expected to be fully-implemented in all ports of the bureau before the year ends

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