The Customs department will begin a standardised risk-based faceless assessment system across the country for clearance of imported consignments in phases starting with metal, from September 5. This would promote ease of doing business as it would bring uniformity in customs examination, and reduce the time taken for clearing consignments. The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) in a circular to field offices said the National Customs Targeting Centre (NCTC) has developed system generated centralized examination orders for Bills of Entry (BoE), based on various parameters, and this will be rolled out in phases.
This risk-based scrutiny would be meant for ‘Second Check Bill of Entry’, under which imported goods do not have to mandatorily go through physical examination. Customs officers do assessment of the imported goods on the basis of the documents submitted to the authorities.
A BoE is filed by importers or their agents to the Customs department before the arrival of imported goods. The CBIC said Risk Management System (RMS)-generated uniform examination order across all Customs stations will be implemented for ‘Second Check Bill of Entry’ in a phased manner, starting with one group of commodities and will thereafter be extended to all other goods incrementally, by adopting a modular approach.
“It has been decided that the standardised Customs examination procedure will come into effect for goods covered under Assessment Group 4 (dealing with metals) in all the Customs Stations from the 5th of September, 2022,” said the CBIC circular dated August 29. This functionality is expected to enhance the uniformity in examination, and reduce the time taken in the process as well as cut associated costs, it added.
EY India Tax Partner Saurabh Agarwal said issuance of procedures in the form of standard check criteria by scrutinizing the BoE through RMS would help meet the ultimate objective of faceless assessment under customs. “This will result in lesser human intervention, faster customs clearance, added accountability for customs administration and also enhance ease of doing business,”Agarwal said.