Trade facilitation reforms

Reforms and amendments on existing regulatory laws will facilitate the free flow of traded goods. These include:

  • Cabotage Law which allows foreign vessels to dock at any Philippine port for loading and unloading of foreign cargoes. It is also expected to increase port revenues and provide price-competitive shipping service that will help exporters to compete effectively in the international market. It will further help decongest Manila ports as most shipments normally have to unload first in Manila before shipping directly to other domestic ports around the country.
  • CMTA which makes PHL compliant with the Revised Kyoto Convention which is a blueprint for “modern and efficient customs procedures” of the World Customs Organization. The law also aims to significantly reduce human intervention in Bureau of Custom’s (BOC) process and promotes transparency and accountability of the BOC.
  • BOC’s Customs Memorandum Order (CMO) 29-2015 which discards two (2) import forms such as the Import Entry and Internal Revenue Declaration (IEIRD) and the Supplemental Declaration on Valuation (SDV). This will reduce their transaction costs with the BOC in the release of their imported items.
  • Another BOC policy that would be beneficial to exporters is the non-requirement of Certificate of Exemption for importation of lithium Ion batteries provided that these are imported as finished product. This was reiterated in Customs Memorandum Circular No. 96 -2015 pursuant to Dangerous Drugs Board Regulation 1-2014.

The BOC also revised its port operation manual, thereby abolishing the requirements of Notice of Stuffing and the presence of Stuffing Inspector during the stuffing/loading of export cargo container (CMO 4- 2015).