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Non-Utilization of Various Initiatives of Customs Department Remain Major Concern: Official

Chennai:

Port Wings News Network:

With the intention to reduce the  transaction cost of exports and also reduce dual time in handling import export cargo, Customs department initiated several measures including Direct Port Delivery and Entry, e-sealing, RFID, AEO programme etc, Shri Ajit Kumar, Principal Chief Commissioner of Customs, Chennai, has said.

Addressing the gathering while inaugurating the Outreach Programme on Trade Facilitation organised jointly by FIEO and Chennai Customs, Shri Ajit Kumar said, “However, irrespective of various pro-active measures undertaken by the department, the trade and industry not raised upto the expected level and utilizing it.”

Shri Ajit Kumar stated: “Today the department is using all advance technology for faster clearance of import export cargo.  However unless and until the industry cope up with changes happening and adopt new technology, it will be lose to those who are not using it.”

He elaborated an example of benefit to the trade due to Direct Port Dealing delivery where exporters and importers can save minimum of Rs. 7000/-per container.

Similarly AEO certified companies can defer duty payment upto 15 days.  The aim of the department is to reach atleast to 35th ranking in Trading across the borders from present 80th ranking.  He also informed that direct port delivery will be available only to AEO operators from 1st April, 2019.

While welcoming the participants the newly elected Regional Chairman of FIEO, Mr. Israr Ahmed, said that exports will be difficult during the year 2019 due to various non-tariff barriers for Indian products and also the removal of GSP benefits by USA for Indian products.

Mr. Israr Ahmed stated: “Due to uncertainty in the market buyers across the globe shrinking the quantities of orders and hence exporters may force to send multiple consignments with the limited time for delivery.  In this regard, unless exporters come up with the new platform and utilizing the new initiatives of the department, the products cannot be competitive.”

He also referred to IGST pending to exporters due to claiming of higher DBK during the period from 1st July 2017 to 30th Nov. 2017, EGM errors, integration issues etc.

While addressing the audience Ms. Sudha Koka, IRS, Commissioner of Customs highlighted various initiatives taken by her department to clear the IGST refund claims pending due to SB005 and PFMS error.  She also highlighted that the customs help desk at FIEO which is functioning of 2nd week of every month helped in clearing thousands of shipping bills pending due to various errors.  While talking about IGST refund pendency, she said that the Commissionerate  of Chennai  Customs, there are 1,52,899 shipping bills has been filed with the claims of Rs. 7,688 crore out of which 1,14,798 shipping bills worth of  Rs. 6,730 cr has been sanctioned on time.  The balance pending shipping bills are due to various issues including non-transmission error the total Shipping Bill is 25,539 worth of Rs.6,444 cr, SB000 the total shipping bill is 5502 worth of Rs. 134.83 cr,  SB006 the total shipping bills is 1355 worth of Rs. 19.54 cr. Meanwhile, these are 4,551 shipping bills worth of Rs.75.343 cr is under the rectifiable errors, which can be sanctioned immediately.

The session was attended by 200 leading exporters in Chennai from different sectors including Leather / Textiles/ Pharmaceuticals and processed food etc.

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