CBIC Norms for Courier Import and Export of COVID-19 Vaccines

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CBIC Norms for Courier Import and Export of COVID-19 Vaccines

The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) have issued certain norms for courier import and export of COVID-19 vaccines wide a notification dated December 30, 2020. With this notification, CBIC announced the Courier Imports and Exports (Electronic Declaration and Processing) Amendment Regulations, 2020 to facilitate the Import/export of COVID-19 vaccines through courier. As per the new regulation Imports of and exports of COVID-19 vaccines has been allowed without any value limitation to ensure speedy clearance and distribution.

Courier Imports and Exports (Electronic Declaration and Processing) Amendment Regulations, 2020

The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) have amended the Courier Imports and Exports (Electronic Declaration and Processing) Regulations, 2010 to facilitate the Import/export of COVID-19 vaccines through courier, at locations where the Express Cargo Clearance System (ECCS) is operational.

Gist of Notification

COVID-19 has produced unprecedented challenges to Customs and efficient clearance and distribution of vaccines would be a critical requirement in the collective fight against the pandemic, hence the CBIC has eased the norms for import and export of COVID-19 vaccines.

  • The export of the durable container including accessories imported about COVID-19 vaccines has also been permitted.
  • Importers have been advised to indicate the unique identifier of the containers and accessories

Condition for Import and Export of Covid-19 Vaccines

As mentioned above, Import and export of Covid-19 vaccines have been allowed without any value addition.

  • The Covid-19 vaccines should be imported in durable containers equipped with the requisite temperature and monitoring and tracking devices.
  • CBIC also allowed temporary importation and re-exportation of durable containers
  • The exporters/importers are requested to ensure compliance with the procedure, including the execution of continuity bond, declaration of the durable containers and accessories as a separate item in the Customs declarations during import and re-export.
  • Import is also advised to indicate the unique identifier of the containers and accessories during import in the courier Bill of Entry and also at the time of re-export in the courier shipping bill for facilitating custom clearance
  • Importers are also advised to indicate the unique identifier of the container and the accessories during import in the Courier Bill of Entry and also at the time of re-export in the Courier Shipping Bill for facilitating custom clearance.

Customs Duty exemption on Temporary Import of Durable Containers

The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) on November 20, 2020, have issued a circular reiterating the conditions for the containers that are eligible for the exemption from the customs duty.

The following conditions need to be satisfied:

  • They Containers should be durable
  • The containers shall be capable of being used multiple times
  • The containers shall be capable of being identified at the time of re-export
  • All other conditions shall be satisfied as well

For all the containers that are not adhering to the following guidelines but are permitted for temporary import and eventual re-import, the following procedure will be followed:

  • All the empty containers will have a bill of entry under the customs act and will have a bond of re-export that shall be required to be furnished at the time of re-import.
  • The containers will be declared as an item in the shipping bill. Further, the containers need to be verified at the time of export by the Customs.
  • Further, these containers will be declared as a separate item in the bill of entry as well.

Procedural Formalities for Clearance of Export of COVID-19 Vaccine

  • In case of export of COVID-19 Vaccine, the Authorized Courier files Courier Shipping Bills with the proper officer of Customs at the airport or Land Customs Station before departure of flight or another mode of transport.
  • Different forms have been prescribed for the export of documents and other goods.
  • The Authorised Courier is required to present the export goods to the proper officer for inspection, examination and assessment

Examination Norms for COVID-19 Vaccine exported by courier

The following examination norms are provided for the export of courier consignments:

  • 100% screening of export consignments will be done through X-ray or other NII techniques.
  • Physical examination of export documents, gifts, samples and export goods limited up to a maximum of 10% of the total courier consignments or specific intelligence. The consignments so selected will be examined 100%
  • Selection of consignments physical examination would be based on the various parameters such as the nature of goods, value, weight, the status of the exporter, etc
  • Commissioner of Customs in the respective port will exercise the discretion of random examination of goods, on a specific parameter such as country of export, nature of goods as presently provided in the EDI system
  • Any consignment can be examined by the Customs (even Upto 100% examination) if there is any specific intelligence or there is doubt during X-ray in respect of the said consignment
  • Under the automated process, the consignments will be identified for examination based on risk analysis

Transhipment of COVID-19 Vaccine

The facility of transhipment between two Customs stations is available under courier mode as per the provisions of the Customs Act, 1962, Goods Imported (Conditions of Transhipment) Regulations, 1995 and other instructions.

Disposal of Uncleared Goods

The Courier regulations for both manual and electronic mode prescribe a procedure for clearance of uncleared goods.

  • In case of imported goods, the same is required to be detained by Customs and a notice issued to the Authorised Courier and goods can be disposed of after the expiry of 30 days of the arrival of the said goods.
  • The charges payable for storage and holding of such goods are to be borne by the Authorised Courier.
  • In the case of export goods, a similar procedure as in respect of imported goods is prescribed, the only difference being that such goods can be disposed of if they have not been exported within 7 days of arrival into the Customs Area or within such extended period as may be permitted by the Customs

Courier Electronic Clearance procedure

Clearance of export goods will be done as follows:

  • The Authorized Courier or his agent will file in an electronic form, a manifest for export goods before its export with the proper officer viz. Courier Export Manifest (CEM) in a prescribed format.
  • The courier packages containing the export goods will not be dealt with after presentation of documents to the proper officer, except with the permission of proper officer, open any package of export goods, brought into the Customs area, to be loaded on a flight.
  • The Authorized Courier or his agent shall make entry of goods for export, in Courier Shipping Bill-III (CSB-III) for documents in a prescribed format, before presenting it to the proper officer.
  • Any export goods brought into customs area for export purpose and not exported within 7 days or within such extended period as permitted by the proper officer in case of delay beyond the control of the Authorized Courier and declared exporter, may be detained by the proper officer and sold or disposed of by the custodian, after notice to the concerned Authorized Courier and declared exporter. The charges for storage and handling of such goods shall be paid by such Authorized Courier

The notification pertaining to the CBIC Norms for courier import and export of COVID-19 vaccines is as follows:

Circular-No-56-2020-updated

Post by Renu Suresh

Renu is experience content writer specialised in compliances and company rules.