Truckers’ registration at BOC on hold; goods lodgement declaration order moved to June 15

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) has placed on hold its order requiring the registration of all truckers carrying import and export goods. At the same time, the agency pushed to June 15 implementation of a shorter period for goods lodgement declaration, according to information gathered by PortCalls from the office of Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero.

Both orders were supposed to be implemented on June 1.

The requirement for registration of truckers is contained in Customs Memorandum Order 05-2019, signed by Guerrero on February 4, while the reduced period for goods lodgement declaration (seven days from the previous 15 days) is under CMO 18-2019 dated April 26 and signed on April 29.

The hold orders on CMOs 05-2019 and 18-2019 were issued after BOC had announced in a May 19 media release the adoption of such orders beginning June 1. BOC said its officials as well as stakeholders, in a public consultation conducted on May 16, agreed to the June 1 schedule of implementation. Organizations that attended the public consultation included the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA), Chamber of Customs Brokers, Inc. (CCBI), Confederation of Truckers Association of the Philippines (CTAP), Port Users Confederation of the Philippines, International Container Terminal Services, Inc. and Asian Terminals Inc.

This is not the first time the implementation of CMOs 05-2019 and 18-2019 has been suspended. In the first suspension, stakeholders have complained of the lack of public consultation prior to adoption of CMO 05-2019. CMO 18-2019, on the other hand, was suspended “pending policy refinements” and updating of the bureau’s electronic-to-mobile system.

Conditional agreement to CMO 18-2019
In a phone interview with PortCalls on May 29, CCBI president Adones Carmona confirmed his group’s agreement to the June 1 implementation of CMO 18-2019 on condition BOC issues guidelines on availment of provisional goods declaration under Section 403 of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act.

Section 403 states: “Where the declarant does not have all the information or supporting documents required to complete the goods declaration, the lodging of a provisional goods declaration may be allowed: Provided, That it substantially contains the necessary information required by the Bureau and the declarant undertakes to complete the information or submit the supporting documents within forty-five (45) days from the filing of the provisional goods declaration, which period may be extended by the Bureau for another forty-five (45) days for valid reasons.”

Carmona explained provisional goods declaration is an option available for customs brokers since certain processes take time to complete, making compliance with the shortened period for lodgement of declaration difficult.

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