The Bureau of Customs (BOC) will start implementing its Electronic Tracking of Containerized Cargo (E-TRACC) System for cargoes coming from Manila and Batangas ports bound for Laguna Technopark, Inc. (LTI) and Cavite Economic Zone (CEZ) on September 14 and 28, respectively.
All containers discharged from the Port of Manila, Manila International Container Port (MICP), and Port of Batangas covered by the transit single administrative document (SAD) and bound for LTI and CEZ must be sealed with the electronic customs seal (ECS) under the E-TRACC System, according to Assessment and Operations Coordinating Group (AOCG) Memo No. 152-2020.
Imports for other Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) economic zones will be covered by another AOCG memorandum.
E-TRACC, which was launched last May, is a web-based system that tracks inland movement of containerized cargoes during transit and transfer to other customs territories and facilities. It allows BOC to track, monitor, and audit the location and condition of cargoes, as well as obtain real-time alarms on diversion and tampering of cargoes.
E-TRACC was established under Customs Memorandum Order (CMO) 04-2020 issued last February.
AOCG deputy commissioner Atty. Edward James Dy Buco earlier said they were coordinating with PEZA on phased implementation of E-TRACC for PEZA shipments.
Customs brokers and locators at LTI and CEZ should register under the system from September 1 to September 13 prior to implementation so as not to cause undue delay in processing of customs clearance, BOC said. The customs officer will not approve any customs clearance without the required E-TRACC booking as prescribed under CMO 04-2020, AOCG Memo No. 152-2020 noted.
Registration to the E-TRACC system can be made at www.ecms.ph. Stakeholders may also contact the service provider, Ascent Solutions Philippines, Inc.
Under AOCG Memo 152-2020, the collection districts at Port of Manila, MICP, and Batangas should ensure all containers processed for PEZA adhere to guidelines under CMO 04-2020.
When booking on the E-TRACC website, the stakeholder should choose the economic zone where the locator is situated.
Full-container-load shipments bound for PEZA locators should be sealed with the ECS, a GPS-enabled sealing device or lock that can physically secure a cargo and provide real-time information on its location. The ECS will be armed or fixed by the service provider personnel, supervised by BOC’s Piers and Inspection Division at the port of discharge.
Once Start Trip Authorization is approved by the control tower, the vehicle carrying the cargo can leave the vicinity toward its destination.
When the vehicle and container arrive at the destination, BOC’s authorized personnel should first compare the container’s visual evidence of sealing of ECS against the actual container that arrived, and look for discrepancy or signs of tampering.
The BOC authorized personnel should also check if the container seal number and the electronic customs seal number are the same as indicated in the trip details, and inform the control tower for approval to end the trip.
Once ending of the trip is authorized, authorized BOC personnel should disarm the container by removing the ECS and tag the cargo as received.
Customs cargo clearance must be fully completed before any shipment is sealed with an ECS.
Subject containers are:
- Import containers bound for container yard/container freight station or other customs facilities and warehouses; transit of cargo bound for Free Zones, inland customs office, depots, or terminals; transit to CBWs.
- Export containers from Free zones, inland customs office, depots or terminals, and CBWs to port of loading.
- Transfer of shipments subject to further verification and/or monitoring.
For exports, Dy Buco earlier clarified the system covers not just PEZA zones, but all other Free zones under the jurisdiction of Freeport authorities.
For imports, it covers all containers in which duties and taxes have not yet been paid. However, certain products for consumption whose duties and taxes have been paid prior to release are also covered, such as reefer cargoes.
Booking for the E-TRACC trip can be made one day before or up to one hour before departure of the container.
E-TRACC requires payment of P500 within a 10-kilometer (km) radius from port of discharge and P700 beyond the 10-km radius from port of discharge. The charge covers both arming and disarming of the ECS. – Roumina Pablo