THE Bureau of Customs (BOC) does not expect Congress to hear the proposed Customs and Tariff Modernization Act (CTMA) until sessions resume in July.
BOC said several high-profile issues at the Lower House eclipsed the CTMA proposal.
Despite constant negotiations with the committee headed by Representative Rufus Rodriguez, no commitment was made until the next session.
“As much as we want to facilitate the process and pass the CTMA, Congress will only start committee hearings by July or August this year,” Customs deputy commissioner for operations Atty. Reynaldo Nicolas said.
“But we are confident it will hurdle any hearing even if it is considered with the Anti-Smuggling Bill,” Nicolas said. “Hopefully, we could get the bill enacted into law by 2010.”
The CTMA is part of the five-year Customs modernization plan crafted under Customs Commissioner Napoleon Morales starting 2007.
It aims to harmonize customs processes and reduce documentation in keeping with provisions of the Revised Kyoto Convention and the adoption of the National Single Window.