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OCOM approval needed for accreditation of importers, brokers

All applications for accreditation of importers and registration of customs brokers must be approved by the Philippine Office of the Commissioner (OCOM), Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero has ordered.

Under Customs Memorandum Order (CMO) No. 23-2018 dated November 26 and which took effect immediately, the Account Management Office (AMO) was ordered to seek OCOM approval for the renewal of accreditation or registration, reapplication, reinstatement, suspension (with lifting of suspension), and revocation or cancellation, AMO is the BOC office that receives and processes importers’ accreditation and customs brokers’ registration.

It must be noted though that OCOM’s approval for importer and broker accreditation was also required by other former customs commissioners in a bid to eradicate consignees-for-hire and fly-by-night importers and customs brokers. But in the previous system, PortCalls was made to understand that AMO could already issue a Certificate of Registration to the importer or customs broker, which then allows them to transact business with the BOC. The Certificate of Accreditation, which will be signed by the Commissioner, can follow later. Now, the application should first be submitted to OCOM. There are fears of delays in the new process.

CMO 23-2018 noted that the new procedure is for “effective monitoring, close coordination, and operational efficiency.”

CMO 23-2018 also directed all concerned BOC offices and units to undertake measures “to prevent disruption [of] the operations of the AMO specifically [in] areas which may adversely affect the service to the public as a result hereof.”

Story updated on Dec 11 at 1:03pm to explain the difference between the previous and current accreditation process.


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