MANILA — A lawmaker in the House of Representatives has filed a measure providing for a classification system for third parties under the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA).
Muntinlupa Rep. Ruffy Biazon filed House Bill 6390, which seeks to establish a classification system to assess the capability of third parties to import, export, move, store, or clear goods.
The bill proposes that the classification for third parties will be according to their capitalization and volume of transactions.
Under the CMTA, a third party is any person dealing directly with the Bureau of Customs (BOC) for and on behalf of another person, relating to the importation, exportation, movement or storage of goods.
Biazon said the congressional hearing on the smuggling of PHP6.4 billion shabu (crystal meth) brought to light that “consignees for hire”, which can be considered as being used by unscrupulous persons and entities to smuggle goods and other illegal contraband into the country.
“These ‘consignees for hire’ more often than not, are small companies that are used as ‘dummy companies, by these unscrupulous persons and entities to hide their true identities and thus escape prosecution,” Biazon said.
Biazon, a former BOC commissioner, cited the need to address this problem in order to abate the smuggling of goods and ensure that proper duties and taxes of goods are collected.
His bill provides that third parties transacting with the BOC shall be held liable for acts committed in violation of this act and related laws.
The bill also mandates the Finance Secretary to issue rules and regulations to govern and regulate the conduct of all third parties. (PNA)