Home » Maritime » PH Shippers want underguarding as alternative to GPS seals

THE private sector is urging the Bureau of Customs (BOC) to retain underguarding or the use of the General Transportation Surety Bond (GTSB) when it implements the Customs Electronic Global Positioning System Equipped Barrier Seal (CEGBS) project.

“It is really a matter of choice,” Roberto Domondon, Clark Development Corp consultant for the CEGBS project, told PortCalls. “CDC locators want a choice on what to use outside of the CEGBS.

The use of the seal under the CEGBS will allow BOC to track cargo in transit from the port of discharge to its final destination, and for the Philippine National Police to respond to hijacking incidents.

“Underguarding and the GTSB should be retained… particularly if the CEGBS system suddenly becomes unavailable.”

Domondon added, “The risk of using CEGBS and underguarding is the same so the decision should be left to the shippers.”

He pointed out that compared to the cost of underguarding, the cost for the use of GPS-equipped seals under the CEGBS is higher even with the BOC-proposed graduated fee scheme.

After receiving brickbats for its proposal to impose a fixed fee of P2,2250 for seal-provided trucks regardless of distance and frequency of use, the BOC is now eyeing graduated fees: P700 per container for cargoes transported within a 20-kilometer range of Epifanio delos Santos Avenue (EDSA); P1,500 per container for those going beyond EDSA; and P2,200 for those transported through the North and South Luzon Expressways.

The fee for underguarding, on the other hand, is approximately P300 per container.

The CEGBS may first be pilot tested on CDC and the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority locators.

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