Thursday 13 March 2014
Almaty Office, Kazakhstan
Importation and In-country Transportation
In continuation of our last blog on the topic of Logistics special mention should be made for those mines that are required to import goods into countries in which mines are operating. Most countries have their own procedures but most follow the same overall process: registration of the company as an importer, registration of incoming goods, submission of a Customs declaration, checking of goods by Customs, payment of duties and VAT where applicable following which release of the goods results. Other requirements are often necessary, such as statistical logging.
While this seems straightforward it is hugely dependent on the accuracy of documentation. The slightest error or omission can cause delays and fines, or worse. It is therefore crucial to ensure that documents are all in order BEFORE they arrive at Customs in-country. Any discrepancies must be corrected by that time. Regular suppliers will know the routine and this may therefore be done while consignments are in transit, but for irregular suppliers that may not be familiar with customs procedures, this is done BEFORE the consignment is despatched. Your freight forwarding contractor must take responsibility for ensuring the accuracy of documentation that they handle.
Many countries allow pre-clearance and this cuts down clearance time on arrival of the goods. If goods are taken prior to completion of clearance procedures, there must be prompt follow up to ensure goods are cleared.
Customs clearance is a specialist task and companies should either appoint an agent or employ a Customs-authorised declarant. It is common that only Nationals can prepare and submit declarations. The agent or in-house declarant must be fully conversant with latest information, regulations and legislature and apply these without delay. Customs departments make a point of rooting out deficiencies and penalising heavily, sometimes long after the event.
If exemptions for duties and taxes apply, these must be handled in a timely manner.
It is not recommended that Customs agents / declarants are responsible for in-country transportation arrangements, as loads may be manipulated to increase revenue. Very often these parties are insufficiently knowledgeable about transportation to assure efficiency. A separate transportation company is recommended for all in-country haulage unless the mine has its own trucking facilities. A mining company employee must coordinate this.
All of the above points must be agreed in contracts with agents and declarants.
CBC is able to undertake and support this crucial element of setting up for an efficient mining supply procurement operation.