On 1 January 2016, the Customs Department released a new Voluntary Audit Program.
Under the program, a company can approach the Customs at their headquarters and voluntarily disclose any import duty that was paid incorrectly in the past. The upside of such voluntarily disclosure is that penalties will be waived. This window of opportunity exists until 31 December 2016.
If no voluntary disclosure is made before the deadline and the Customs later discover any non-compliance that results in an import duty shortfall, the penalty of up to four times of the CIF value may apply.
Certain offences do not qualify for the amnesty, such as smuggling, intentional duty evasion, import or export without a license, offences under the Intellectual Property Law, ongoing audits or court cases, and reoccurring non-compliance issues that were subject to previous amnesty programs.The program presents an opportunity to clean up your customs compliance in a cost and time efficient manner.
However, before approaching the Customs, it is advisable to undertake a ‘health-check’ to ensure that all instances of non-compliance are identified. These can then be managed and disclosed to the Customs as part of the amnesty program to take the full advantage of the program and reduce the risk of a future customs audit.
Please contact us, should you require any assistance in relation to the program or would like to undertake a customs ‘health-check’.
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