Home » Customs & Trade » BOC suspends use of green lane to plug revenue leaks

THE use of the green lane has been temporarily suspended by the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in order to curb smuggling.

Newly installed Manila International Container Port (MICP) district collector Ricardo Belmonte suspects the green lane is being exploited by smugglers.

A low-risk shipment goes through the green lane and is generally subject to no documentary review or physical inspection but is covered by the post-audit review. A moderate-risk shipment goes through the yellow lane and is subject to documentary review but no physical inspection. A high-risk shipment channels through the red lane and is subject to both documentary review and physical inspection prior to its release. The super green lane is for qualified importers of extremely low risk to provide immediate clearance.

“We feel there may be some containers passing through green lane when they shouldn’t,” said Belmonte. “Supposedly containers passing through green lane are those that are screened by our selectivity system. We suspended the green lane so our people can physically examine (cargoes passing through the lane). So now, we only have the red, yellow and super green lanes.”

“I am expecting this move will drastically increase MICP collection,” Belmonte said.

MICP has not been meeting its revenue targets in the last few months. For January to August, about 25% of the BOC’s total collection shortfall was accounted for by MICP, which booked a deficit of P1.59 billion.

The MICP is also enhancing the adoption of the non-intrusive scanning system with the installation of additional scanners. Once MICP’s Berth 6 becomes operational toward the end of the year, scanners will be positioned in the area.

Belmonte is talking to officials of the International Container Terminal Services, Inc, operator of the Manila International Container Terminal, to find space within the port so that more scanners can be used.

MICP has been allotted five scanners but only use two or three are in use due to space constraints. An additional scanner will likely be added later this month.

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