By Betheena Kae Unite
A shipment will now be tagged abandoned if its entry was not filed in the Bureau of Customs’ electronic-to-mobile (E2M) system within 15 days, Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero ordered.
From the original 30 days grace period for importers to lodge an entry for their shipments, they now only have 15 days to comply with the process before their goods are released.
This was ordered by Guerrero following a discussion with Customs stakeholders last January 15, according to Deputy Commissioner Jeffrey Dy of the Management Information System and Technology Group.
“The goods shall now be tagged abandoned upon the failure to lodge an entry within 15 days from the date of discharge of the last package from the vessel or aircraft,” a memorandum dated January 22 read.
Once a shipment is tagged abandoned, the bureau will have the authority to forfeit the goods in favor of the government. It will either be auctioned off or destroyed.
However, the period to file may be extended on valid grounds for another 15 days upon request by stakeholder, Guerrero said. But the request should be made “before the expiration of the original period.”
Once the request for extension was granted, the shipment will no longer be tagged as abandoned, but a strict monitoring on the shipments should be enforced by the district collectors within the 15-day extension.
Once the entry is lodged, the goods will not be tagged as abandoned in the E2M pending its final assessment.
It was further agreed upon that the goods shall also be tagged as abandoned shipment “upon failure to make the final payment within 15 days from the date of final assessment.”
The order, according to Guerrero, is implemented pursuant to Sections 1129(b) and 1129© of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act.
E2M program aims to streamline customs processes to improve trade facilitation between the bureau and its stakeholders and to eliminate face-to-face transactions which have been blamed as the platform for corrupt practices.