From now on, all applications for an Electronic Authority to Release Imported Goods (eATRIG) must be done by Philippine importers through the Bureau of Customs’ (BOC) National Single Window (NSW) system.
This is in line with Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) Revenue Memorandum 14-2014 dated March 5, 2014 for the release of goods imported into the country’s ports to ensure proper payment of taxes and duties by companies. The order took effect immediately.
The NSW was developed in order to provide all importers of goods a one-stop shop in online filing and processing of import entry declaration under which all concerned regulatory government offices issuing import clearances/permits like the BIR-issued ATRIG are issued.
The BIR uses the e-ATRIG system in processing application for ATRIG and issuing the corresponding ATRIG for excise tax purposes, particularly for all importation of articles subject to excise tax purposes (whether except or taxable), including the raw materials in the production thereof, as well as the machineries, equipment, apparatus or any mechanical contrivances especially used for its assembly/production to be released through the Port of Manila and Manila International Container Port.
Under RMO 14-2014, BIR Commissioner Kim Henares said every application for ATRIG will be done online through the NSW system. A hard copy of the duly notarized application form will still be submitted by the importer or authorized broker-representative to the BIR and no approved eATRIG shall be electronically transmitted to BOC until such submission has been complied with.
Only applications of importer-applicant and broker-representative who are duly registered BIR taxpayers will be processed.
An individual importer-applicant must present a photocopy of his/her latest annual income tax return together with the audited financial statements duly stamped received by the BIR. These will be used in the valuation of the individual importer-applicant’s financial capacity to import.
The eATRIG will be processed, approved and issued not later than the next working day after actual receipt of the application with complete documents/requirements, provided there is no legal issue on the taxability of the imported article.
Prior ocular inspection of the imported goods would be conducted, if deemed necessary.
Any application for eATRIG that has been pending for least a month due to failure of the importer-applicant and/or broker/representative to submit the required supporting documents would be tagged as rejected, Henares said.
Importers are required to first secure accreditation from the BIR before they can import goods through the Customs’ ports.
Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima said the accreditation system is an essential step in the government’s efforts to ensure importer accountability and compliance.
“With the database of the BIR on registered taxpayers, we will be in a better position to determine whether an importer is doing legitimate business and when they are paying the right taxes,” he had said earlier.
The government loses P200-400 billion a year in potential revenue due to smuggling.