Customs Brokers Licensing Regulations

Customs Brokers Licensing Regulations

Any individual that acts as an agent for the importer-exporter for the use of transacting business shall acquire the licence with the National Academy of Customs, Indirect Taxes and Narcotics (NACIN). To regulate the licencing of customs brokers, the Government of India (GoI) introduced Customs Brokers Licensing Regulations (CBLR, 2018). The regulations are issued as per the Aadhar Act 2016, Companies Act 2013, Finance Act 1994 and CBDT Act 2017. The regulations shall be of any type of business, related to entry or departure of assignments, importing and exporting of goods at any Customs unit including audit. As per the regulations, no person shall conduct business as a customs broker unless carrying the licence issued as per the regulations. The following are the types of Customs brokers that need to acquire licence:

  • An importer or exporter conducting business at a Customs Station solely through his account
  • Any authorised employee conducting business on behalf of the company having a temporary pass or an identity card issued by the Deputy Commissioner of Customs or Assistant Commissioner of Customs
  • An agent hired for ancillary work to enter or clear one or more vessels or aircraft

Eligibility Criteria

  • Any individual, company, firm or association
  • Any applicant applying for a license to act as a Customs Broker in a Customs Station should meet the following conditions:
  • Should be a citizen of India
  • Should not have been ruled as insolvent
  • Should hold a valid Aadhaar and PAN card
  • Should not have been held under the Central Excise Act 1944, Finance Act 1994, CBDT Act 2017
  • Should not have been convicted for any criminal offence or any pending case(s)
  • The applicant should be graduated from a recognised university
  • Should hold a professional degree in Management, Accounting, Finance, CA, CS, MBA, LLM, ACMA or FCMA
  • However, if the applicant does not have any of the professional degrees mentioned above, as an alternative, the person shall have two years experience in transacting Customs Broker as a G-card holder.
  • The applicant should hold a certificate validating the financial feasibility issued by the Customs’ Principal Commissioner, Commissioner of Customs or a Scheduled Bank
  • Any retired Group A officer having an experience of five years

Examination for Acquiring the Customs Broker Licence

Any applicant applying for Customs broker licence shall appear for an online exam conducted by NACIN. The exam is conducted in the first and second quarter of each year. The exam contains both written and oral questions. If the applicant has cleared the exam as per Custom House Agents Licensing Regulation 1984, the Custom House Agents Licensing Regulation 2004 or the Customs Brokers Licensing Regulations 2013, the person is not required to re-appear for the exam.

The online written exam conducted by the NACIN shall be4 conducted in the first quarter of each year. After clearing the written exam, the applicant shall appear for an oral exam in the second quarter of each year. The results of the oral exam will be released in the month of July.

An attempt or cancellation for the written exam shall be considered as an attempt. The applicant shall have a total of six attempts to clear the exam.

The following are the type of questions that may appear for the exam:

  • Preparing various kinds of shipping bills, bills of entry, bills of export, and other documents related to clearance
  • Terms on arrival entry and clearance of vessels
  • Classification of tariff and duty charges
  • Determination of value of imported and export goods
  • Conversion of currency
  • Description of documents that are required to be filed along with the bills of entry, shipping bills and other clearance documents
  • Assessment procedure and payment of duty including a refund of duty paid
  • Procedure for examining the goods at Customs Stations
  • List of banned products on import and export
  • Bonding procedure and clearance from bond
  • Export promotion schemes including the Special Economic Zone scheme
  • List of offences under the Act
  • Procedure to appeal and revision applications under the Act
  • Process of filing the entry and shipping bills online through ICEGATE and Indian Customs Electronic Data Interchange System (ICES)

Fee for the Exam

The applicant who has cleared both written and oral exam shall pay a fee of Rs.5000. The fee should be paid within two months after the release of the results. The information about the payment should be informed to the authority in the Customs. If the applicant does not pay within the stipulated time, the concerned authority shall cancel granting the license.

Granting the Licence

Form B1: The licence for an individual shall be provided in Form B1 after paying the required fee amount within the stipulated time.

Form B2: The licence for a company or firm shall be provided in Form B2 after paying the required fee amount within the stipulated time.

If the company makes changes in Aadhaar or PAN, a fresh licence must be applied within sixty days. After acquiring the licence, the customs broker shall transact business using Form B1 and Form B2.

Validity of the Licence

The Form B1 and Form B2 is valid up to a period of ten years. To renew the licence the applicant shall apply within one month after the expiry of the licence. If delayed, the applicant shall be liable to pay a fine of Rs.2000 as a late fee.

Process of Acquiring a Customs Broker Licence

Step 1: Check the Eligibility Criteria

Step 2: Appear for the online examination conducted by the NACIN. If the applicant has already cleared the exam, the individual shall not re-appear for the exam

Step 3: Pay the required fee as mentioned in the regulations

Step 4: Upon approval, the licence will be provided in Form B1 and B2

Step 5: In case of any change in the company, the details should be submitted within 60 days

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Post by Peter

Peter is a Senior Content Writer and Copy Editor in Finance specializing in GST and Import & Export. He has also written articles on Medical, Philosophy, and Literature and published research papers in international journals.