Pre-border verification, e-invoicing of imports implementation underway

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  • Implementation of the pre-border technical verification and cross-border electronic invoicing of all imported commodities is underway
  • This, after a technical working group was created to finalize a draft joint administrative order implementing the policy under Administrative Order 23
  • The JAO details the scope, qualifications for accreditation of testing and certification companies and clearance procedures for AO 23 adoption

Implementation of the pre-border technical verification and cross-border electronic invoicing of all imported commodities is underway.

This, after the Committee for Pre-border Technical Verification and Cross- border Electronic Invoicing (CPTVCEI) approved the creation of a technical working group (TWG) to finalize a draft joint administrative order (JAO) implementing the policy under Administrative Order 23.

The draft JAO was presented by Bureau of Customs (BOC) deputy commissioner Vener Baquiran during the recent inaugural meeting of the CPTVCEI to operationalize Administrative Order (AO) No. 23.

READ: Marcos orders pre-border verification, e-invoicing for all imports

The JAO details, among others, the objectives, scope, exemptions, qualifications for the accreditation of testing, inspection and certification (TIC) companies, reporting, and clearance procedures for the proper implementation of AO 23.

AO 23, signed last May, directs BOC to implement the pre-border technical verification and cross-border electronic invoicing system to expedite inspection of all imported goods and further strengthen national security, safeguard consumers’ rights, and protect the environment against sub-standard and dangerous imported goods.

Pre-border technical verification refers to testing and inspection of all commodities by accredited TIC companies prior to exporting to the Philippines. The process verifies in advance the declared specifications, description, weight, volume, and country of origin, and ensuring these commodities are safe and of good quality, in accordance with the World Trade Organization Facilitation Agreement and existing regulations.

The cross-border electronic invoicing system is used by a verified and registered foreign exporter to create export invoice on a single electronic platform controlled by the Philippine government.

The electronic invoice is shared in real time with BOC, Bureau of Internal Revenue, Department of Agriculture, Department of Trade and Industry, and other relevant government agencies.

AO 23 created the CPTVCEI with the finance secretary as chairperson and with the secretaries of agriculture, trade, energy, health, environment and natural resources and information communications technology serving as members.

Implementation will be in three phases. The first phase covers agricultural goods, the second phase non-agricultural goods with health and safety issues, and the third phase covers other goods with misdeclaration to avoid duties and taxes.

The CPTVCEI will set targets for the phased implementation, provided that the pre-border technical verification and cross-border electronic invoicing system will be fully implemented within two years from effectivity of AO 23.

During the inaugural meeting, Customs commissioner Bienvenido Rubio provided the overview of the initiative.

In line with Section 2 of AO 23, the CPTVCEI Secretariat presented the process and timeline for the nomination and appointment of the non-voting representatives from duly recognized industry associations.

The CPTVCEI will receive nominations until June 20, 2024. The finance secretary should appoint two representatives by June 28, both of who

will be invited to attend the next committee meeting.

The CPTVCEI and member agencies will also organize public consultations and stakeholder engagements to ensure proper implementation of the systems.

With the systems in place, Finance Secretary Ralph Recto said the country is one step closer to putting an end to smuggling, misdeclaration, and undervaluation.