Home » Breaking News, Customs & Trade, Events » PH Customs to junk e2m for new integrated system

The Philippine Bureau of Customs (BOC) will replace next year its electronic-to-mobile (e2m) system with the Integrated Philippine Customs System (iPCS).

At the recent Philippine Maritime Law Annual Conference jointly organized by the Maritime Law Association of the Philippines and PortCalls, Customs deputy commissioner for Management Information System and Technology Group Ma. Caridad Manarang said iPCS will offer an “integrated and more efficient customs system” and not a “hybrid”, which she said e2m is.

Derisively referred to by many sectors as “electronic-to-manual”, the e2m system has many technical flaws that have resulted in more human intervention, she noted.

The current system, Manarang explained, has not delivered “major improvements in terms of simplified procedures”. Some of its modules have also yet to be implemented.

There are modules not fully integrated to the e2m system requiring manual intervention and some running on the old Asycuda (Automated System for Customs Data) resulting in hybrid implementation of Asycuda/e2m, which is costly and inefficient, she pointed out.

Manarang said iPCS will “do away with several sectors” of the e2m system and “add functionalities not included in the existing one such as the automation of examiner assignment.

“It will likewise eliminate all manual work-around and get rid of several sectors that are not needed,” she explained, all in the interest of keeping down the cost of doing business in the Philippines.

Among those that will be made redundant under iPCS are the Interim Customs Accreditation Registration Unit and Registration and Entry Processing Unit (EPU).

ICARE accredits all importers, exporters, brokers and all other stakeholders dealing with the BOC. EPU, on the other hand, is where all consumption entries are filed for review and then assigned to their appropriate Customs sections.

The BOC official is thus pushing for a one-time unified registration system that will register all importers, exporters, customs brokers and all other stakeholders needing to transact not only with the BOC but other government agencies as well.

iPCS will also do away with the use of value-added service providers (VASP), which capture and process all import and export entries for the BOC.

Manarang, who chairs the steering committee of the ASEAN Single Window (ASW), described the VASP arrangement as “insecure, with private companies having access to confidential trade data. There is also no significant value added provided by VASPs to justify fees charged to traders.”

iPCS has a budget of P550 million. The bidding process will start next year.

Aside from a new system, BOC is busy implementing the Philippine National Single Window system, which covers government-wide rationalization, standardization and harmonization of all trade data, enhancement of trade portals and hookup to the ASW. Phase II of the system is taking longer than expected after bidding for its implementation was declared a failure.

Images taken from presentation of Deputy Commissioner Ma Caridad Manarang. Presentation material is available at www.portcalls.com/marlaw-portcalls-philippine-maritime-law-annual-conference/

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