CUSTOMS PRACTICE NOTE
TRANSPORTATION OF CARGO DURING LOCKDOWN
In order to ease the increasing congestion experienced in our ports, a Customs Practice Note was issued in respect of the transporting of goods.
This note was issued as a result of the amendment of the lockdown regulations stipulating that all goods, not only essential goods, may be transported across the borders in order to clear up the congestion and facilitate the expedited delivery of essential goods.
The Customs Practice Note determines as follows:
• The requirement to clear all import, export or transit cargo timeously as prescribed in the Customs and Excise Act remains unchanged.
• All cargo may be evacuated from ports of entry to their intended destination, provided that such cargo:
1. has been properly sanitised in a manner as prescribed by the relevant Government Department; and
2. has been customs cleared and released prior to removal, or is removed by an approved container operator on the basis of a manifest submitted to SARS; and
3. is delivered to an approved or licenced temporary storage facility.
• Once goods have been moved from the port of entry to a storage facility, the physical delivery thereof to any consignee is subject to the restrictions imposed by the regulations in respect of essential services and goods for the duration of the lockdown.
• Essential goods may be delivered from temporary storage facilities to consignees who perform essential services, subject to valid clearance.
• Non-essential goods must be stored at temporary storage facilities, and may not be delivered during the lockdown period.
• Non-essential goods, being kept at temporary storage facilities during the lockdown, which have been cleared for customs procedures relating to warehousing, transit or processing, retain their status relating to the suspension of duty and VAT for the period of lockdown.
• Where high risk cargo is stopped for examination, Customs will scan the cargo where possible. Where a physical examination is required, the cargo must be moved to a temporary storage facility or such other place as may be directed.
• The removal of essential cargo under international transit, transhipment or export procedures to neighbouring countries continues as per the regulations.
• The exportation of essential cargo continues, subject to further restrictions imposed by the country of destination or ITAC.
The complete practice note can be viewed by clicking here.
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