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Courier Agents/Small Package Consolidators

Packages

All consignments must be pre-alerted, and supplier’s invoices sent to Courier Agents/ Small Package Consolidators. Any consignment without supplier’s invoices will not be processed (at the time of sorting), by Customs. These consignments will be secured at the courier facilities/shed #5. These consignments will be subsequently dealt with by customs on submission of relevant shipping documents.

  1. Courier Agents/Small Package Consolidators MUST indicate on the Bill of Lading/Airway Bill (BL, AWB), the exporter name and address. NOTE: Exporter/Shipper field must contain the actual name of the Exporter/Supplier and not the name of the shipping agent or shipping line. This requirement is mandatory, and failure to adhere to this requirement may result in delays in sorting/ processing consignments.
  1. Courier Agents/Small Package Consolidators, and Customs to sort shipments to identify and release the packages which qualify under the De Minimis System.
  1. Officers shall sort packages, utilizing the Sorting List generated in ASYCUDA. To print the list, the Manifest must be registered.
  1. Before or after the sorting process is complete, Courier Agents/Small Package Consolidators shall pay duties and taxes on pre-alerted cargo (i.e. consignments with accompanying supplier’s invoices) on behalf of their clients. This should be done, using the “SD4” Declaration Regime. This arrangement covers non-commercial shipments only.
  1. Courier Agents/Small Package Consolidators are required to provide the importer with a receipt (Sec 263 of the Customs Act) containing the classification of the goods, the transaction number, and a breakdown of the duties and taxes paid.
  1. Importers of commercial consignments can designate any registered broker or tariff clerk to act on his/her behalf.
  1. Duty is payable on all items in a consignment if the consignment does not qualify for De minimis treatment, i.e. if the Cost, Insurance and Freight (CIF) total is over $150.00 XCD. The applicable duty will be charged on items on importation.
  1. Sorting of cargo will be conducted by officers stationed at the shed in conjunction with a rotating team of officers to aid in making the sorting and delivery faster and more effective.
  2. The Customs Act # 20 of 2010, provides for severe penalties for offences of:
    • Improper Importation of Goods (section 45),
    • Submitting False Declarations (Section186),
    • Counterfeiting Documents (section 187) 
    • Fraudulent Evasion of Duty (section 189).

Where such violations are detected, offenders are liable to be prosecuted or fined and the goods are liable to forfeiture.

  

 Importers

1.Any person in Dominica may import goods for personal/commercial use by courier services, subject to the following conditions:

  • The goods are not prohibited or restricted for import into Dominica.
  • In case an import permit/license is required – an application must be submitted to the competent authority for approval, prior to importation of the goods. On receipt of the license/permit, a detailed declaration must be submitted to customs.
  • III. Goods are subject to customs control and all applicable duties and taxes must be paid prior to delivery of the goods.
  • Only the Courier agent/Small Package Consolidator, is authorized to transact courier cargo clearance functions at customs, except if the consignment is of a commercial nature (see 10 below)

 

2. Imported goods may qualify for De minimis treatment if the following conditions are met:

 Goods:

    • Must have a declared or assessed C.I,F[1] value up to $150.00 XCD;
    • Are not alcoholic beverages
    • Are not cigars, cigarettes, or tobacco products,
    • Are not imported for commercial (resale), industrial (manufacturing), occupational (job or work related), institutional (churches schools, hospitals, etc.), or other similar purposes

       3. The Importer is responsible for declaring the contents of the consignment.

  1. The importer must verify with the supplier that the shipping documents (invoice, freight bill etc.), matches the goods being imported and that the details provided regarding the purchase transaction, including the price of the goods, are accurate.
  1. In accordance with Sections 45,186,187 and 189 of the Customs Act #20 of 2010, which deals with importation of goods, submission of documents and payment of duty, discrepancies between the actual goods and their description, classification, and value on the import declaration/parcel label, constitutes sufficient grounds for seizing the goods, even if the false declaration was made without the importers’ knowledge.
  1. In case of a false declaration, customs may institute legal proceedings or impose hefty penalties against the importer[2] (the person who the goods are consigned to), in addition to payment of the applicable duties and taxes, and the goods are liable to forfeiture.
  1. If the goods do not qualify for de minimis treatment, the Courier Agents/Small Package Consolidators will pay the duties and taxes on pre-alerted cargo (i.e. consignments with accompanying supplier’s invoices) on the importer’s behalf. This arrangement covers non-commercial shipments only.
  1. If the goods are of a commercial nature, the importer may authorize a registered customs broker/Tariff Clerk to act on his/her behalf.
  1. All importations are subject to physical examination by customs. During the sorting process, packages may be opened in order to verify the contents and/or the value.
  1. Consignments which are not pre-alerted will not be cleared during the sorting process, but instead be secured at the courier facilities/shed #5, to be subsequently dealt with by customs.
  1. Importers can request from their Courier Agents/Small Package Consolidators a receipt containing the classification of the goods, the transaction number, and a breakdown of the duties and taxes paid.
  1. Customs will utilize available data, knowledge and competence to the extent possible, to determine consignments on which no customs duties and taxes will be collected, aside from certain prescribed goods. The importers history, (Type, frequency and quantity of imports) may be taken into account when determining the qualification of his/her consignment for De minimis treatment.
  1. Importers may experience delays in receiving packages, if the information provided to the Courier Agent/Small Package Consolidator is unreliable, incomplete or non-verifiable on examination by customs.

 

[1] C.I.F – Cost, Insurance and Freight. This is a combination of all the costs incurred by the importer, to get the goods to Dominica.

[2]  “Importer”, in relation to the importation of goods, means the person, including the owner or consignee, or   other person beneficially interested in the goods, or an agent acting on behalf of that person.               

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