New Customs clearance system set to go

Picture Caption: (In suite second from right) PNG Customs Acting Assistant Commissioner Compliance and Procedures and ASYCUDA World National Project Team (AWNPT) manager, Mr. John Nakiria during the project’s launching in Port Moresby on Oct 25, 2016. Picture courtesy of PNG Customs.

By CYRIL GARE

A NEW system of paying duties and taxes and declaration and clearance of goods from PNG Customs will be introduced at all ports of entry and departure in Port Moresby starting Oct 30.

This new system is called the ASYCUDA World (AW) or simply the Automated System for Customs Data that which was adopted from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) by the government in 2014 to “promote digital Customs through the use of Information Communication Technology”.

The implementation of AW at PNG Customs check points at Jackson’s international airport and Motukea wharf will affect all shipping companies and its agents, airline companies and its agents, freight forwarders and consolidators, warehouse owners and depot operators, customs agents and brokers, and excisable goods manufacturers and producers.

Government departments, State Enterprises, Foreign missions and Embassies and others who normally import or export and also seek duty and tax exemptions from the Internal Revenue Commission (IRC) and PNG Customs will also be affected.

Basically, AW is web-based and is an up-grade of current ASYCUDA ++ system which awareness on its introduction was continuing through meetings, training and workshops and advertisements in local newspapers since 2014.

PNG Customs Acting Assistant Commissioner Compliance and Procedures and AW National Project Team (NPT) manager, John Nakiria said an IRC’s Tax Identification Number (TIN) is the primary requirement now for all stakeholders to subscribe under AW unlike before where a Broker’s Tax Code was required.

“While most stakeholders have provided their TINs, others especially government departments, state enterprises, foreign missions and embassies and others are yet to provide theirs,” Mr Nakiria said.

“They have until October 30 to comply…TINs are mandatory requirement to facilitate all customs related transactions under the AW system. If no TIN, no clearance.”

He said other requirements were for Brokers to ensure all un-paid entries or SADs (Single Administrative Documents) are paid, validate your licenses – License Fee & Bank Guarantees, and provide detailed information with ID photos to create user names – form given during training.

Mr Nakiria said having offered AW user and compliance training to Port Moresby based customs officers, shippers, freight forwarders and customs brokers between April and September, he was confident that the Oct 30 execution should be effective and without hassles.

The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) is the executing agency of AW but is fully funded by the government since October 2014 when AW was first adopted.

AW was to be implemented in three phases: prototype, pilot, and rollout phases. The prototype phase was slow and only completed in Sep, 2017 (Cargo Manifest Process and SAD) with pilot phase starting this month beginning in Port Moresby and will later rollout (phase III) to other provinces.

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