Business and Trade

Queen's Warehouse Auction


All auctions conducted by the Jamaica Customs Agency follow established guidelines and procedures in order to ensure transparency and adherence to the law.

Section 88 of the Customs Act highlights conditions under which items are eligible to be auctioned - (goods are deposited in the Queen's Warehouse after 14 days of off-loading and auctioned 4 months after being in the Queen's Warehouse). The exceptions are those items under investigation or pending court procedures.

The auction procedure is as follows:

  1. Participating

    All persons wishing to participate in the auction must be registered. Applicants are required to submit 2 passport size photographs, TRN Card and a valid ID. Registration takes place Queen's Warehouse: Norman Manley International Airport, Sangster International Airport and 230 Spanish Town Road, Monday - Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

     

  2. Conducting

    All auctions are conducted in the presence of Auditors and a representative from the Ministry of Finance & the Public Service warehoused. (Written certification must be received from the Public Health Department prior to auction).

    • Perishable items are auctioned immediately upon being
    • Items not permitted to be warehoused eg. (matches) are to be auctioned after 14 days notice by publication in the Gazette & Newspaper.

     

  3. Reasons for Withdrawal of Goods from Auction Sales

    Items / motor vehicles previously advertised in the Newspaper may not be available for sale on the day of the auction, as the importers have the right to the clearance of their goods/motor vehicles up to the day before the Auction.

     

  4. Reserved Price

    A Reserved Price must be assessed on all goods/motor vehicles to be auctioned. This represents the lowest price at which the goods may be sold to recover the duties, other taxes and charges.

     

  5. Payment

    For purchases by manager's cheque, delivery will not be made until the banks have cleared these cheques which should be made payable to the&nbsp;<strong>Collector of Customs&nbsp;</strong>. Successful bidders who are unable to make full payment on the day of the sale will be required to deposit at least ten percent (applicable only to motor vehicles) of their bids with the balance to be paid within one week (10% is non-refundable).

     

  6. Disposal of Proceeds from Auction

    In ALL cases where goods are sold under the provisions of the Act, the proceeds must first be applied to:

    • Customs Duty, GCT & other relevant taxes
    • Removal and Sale Expenses
    • Any rent & charges due to Government
    • Freight, port storage and other charges.
    • The remainder to the owner of the goods on application within 2 years of the sale.


    Before the vehicles/goods are released to the successful bidder or the importer, Customs must first be satisfied that all charges due on such goods have been paid.

     

 


Duties & Taxes


Duties, Taxes And Fees on Imported Items Collected by Customs

  1. Import Duty/Customs Duty

    This is the duty payable on imported goods. The rates of duty are published in the Jamaica Customs Tariff, which may be purchased from Jamaica Printing Services at 77 ½ Duke Street, Kingston, Telephone (876) 967-2250; www.jps1992@cwjamaica.com.

  2. Stamp Duty

    Postage Stamps amounting to the value of Jamaican Five Dollars ($5) must be affixed to receipts with a Cost Insurance and Freight (c.i.f.) value of Five Thousand Five Hundred Jamaican Dollars (J$5,500) and less. For receipts with values above this range, One Hundred Dollars ($100) worth of stamps must be affixed.

  3. Additional Stamp Duty (ASD)

    Additional stamp duty is payable on certain items e.g., chicken and most chicken parts, pork and some pork products, beef and some beef products; some aluminum products, alcoholic beverages, and cigarettes.

  4. General Consumption Tax (GCT) and Special Consumption Tax (SCT)

    The General Consumption Tax Act provides for two main types of taxes.

    These are General Consumption Tax (GCT) and Special Consumption Tax (SCT).

    Since October 22, 1991, the General Consumption Tax (GCT) and Special Consumption Tax (SCT) have replaced several duties and taxes, e.g., Excise Duty, CARICOM Duty, Consumption Duty, Entertainment Duty, Retail Sales Tax, Hotel Accommodation Tax and Telephone Service Tax.

    GCT is paid on goods and services except those items that are zero-rated and those that are exempted from GCT. Zero rated items are items that attract 0% GCT. Exempted items are items that do not attract GCT.

    SCT is payable on a few items. These are alcoholic beverages, most tobacco products and some petroleum products.

    Most items attract only GCT, while some attract both GCT and SCT.


  5. Standard Compliance Fee (SCF)

    This is a fee of 0.3% collected on behalf of the Bureau of Standards. SCF is calculated on the CIF value.

  6. Customs Administrative Fee (CAF)

    The Customs Administrative Fee (CAF) is a fee imposed on or in connection with importation or exportation, and is an approximate cost of the services rendered

  7. Processing Forms

    Processing  Fees are required for the processing of certain documents submitted to the Customs Department. These are:
    C7
    Application to load or unload cargo at a Sufferance Wharf
    C15
    Application to amend report
    C24A
    Provisional entry
    C24B
    Bill of Sight
    C25
    Request to import goods for temporary use
    C26
    Application to remove goods under bond prior to entry
    C27
    Unaccompanied baggage declaration
    C32
    Request to repack warehouse goods
    C33
    Application to remove goods for re-warehousing
    C36
    Transshipment-shipment shipping bill
    C43
    Permit to export goods for subsequent re-importation
    C78
    Import entry
    C82
    Shipping bill for export
    C83
    Import entry
    C78X
    Import entry, which will replace the form C79.




  8. Cost, Insurance and Freight (CIF)

    Cost: This is the total cost of the goods abroad including ex-factory price, commission, mark-up and inland freight but excluding sales tax and interest. The cost of the goods is sometimes expressed as FOB (Free on Board) or FOA (Free on Air)

    Insurance: This is the insurance charge which is payable to transport the goods to Jamaica in order to ensure that some compensation will be available to you in the event of the loss or damage of the goods.

    If you have not paid any insurance charges when freighting your goods to Jamaica, an insurance charge is still applicable for valuation purposes. For goods arriving by sea, the insurance charge is 1.5% of the total Cost and Freight(c. & f.), that is, if the goods cost US$100 and the freight charge is US$50, then C&F would be US$100 + US$50 = US$150. 1.5% of US$150, i.e. 150 x 3/200 = US$2.25.

    Total c.i.f. therefore is $100 + $50 + $2.25 = US$152.25.

    For shipments arriving by air the insurance applicable is 1% of the total Cost and Freight. The insurance rate of 1.5% is applicable to marine cargo.

    Freight: This is the amount of money paid or payable to the shipping agent or the airlines for the goods to be shipped or transported to Jamaica, including inland freight, packaging and handling charges.


  9. Environmental Levy

    0.5% of the CIF value of all imports


Commercial Import

The clearance of all commercial goods must be done using the Electronic Single Administrative Document (eSAD) on the ASYCUDA System.

What are commercial goods?

Goods can be classified as being commercial if they fall into any of the following categories:

  • They are imported for business purposes.
  • They are imported for resale.
  • They are samples imported for business purposes.

 

What are the documents needed to import commercial goods?
  • Shipping documents such as a Bill of Lading or Airway Bill.
  • An authentic invoice from the supplier.
  • Import permits or licences, where applicable.
  • A Tax Compliance Certificate (TCC), Taxpayer Registration Number (TRN) and a copy of the General Consumption Tax (GCT) Certificate.
  • An Original Certificate of Origin, if the goods are being imported from a country with which Jamaica has a Trade Agreement, and for which preferential duty treatment is being claimed.

 

What are the payment options for clearing commercial goods?
  • Cash, up to a maximum of one million dollars (JA$1,000,000.00)
  • Online Payment – importers must register with the JCA in order to pay online
  • Debit or Credit Card
  • Manager’s Cheque
  • Direct Bank Transfer using Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS)
  • Advanced Deposit Account

 

What are the categories of goods that must be cleared by a licensed Customs Broker?
  • Goods with a Cost Insurance and Freight (CIF) value of more than US$5000.00 must be cleared by a licensed Customs Broker
  • The clearance of all motor vehicles must be done by a licensed Customs Broker.
  • Where the CIF value of the goods is US$5000 or less, the use of a Customs Broker is optional. Goods of this value can be cleared by the importer at the port of entry upon presentation of the clearance documents to the Customs Officer.

    N.B. Persons must ensure that they use only Customs Brokers who are registered with the Jamaica Customs Agency and possess a valid licence to practise.

 

How are commercial goods cleared?
  • Commercial goods must be cleared using the Electronic Single Administrative Document (eSAD) on the Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA).
  • If a Customs Broker is required, then all documents must be presented to the Broker who will complete the clearance process.
  • When the service of a Customs Broker or local agent is used, the C73 Form must be completed by the importer and the form processing fee of JA$5000 paid to the JCA. This form is valid for one year.
  • If a company employee/or person so authorised by the company, is used to effect clearance, a letter of authorisation from the company must be provided as well as a valid company ID (for employees).

 

The clearance process
  • Collect shipping documents from local agent and pay relevant fees.
  • A Customs Broker or authorised agent will prepare the commercial entry and submit to the Entry Processing Unit of the JCA.
  • The importer/agent will proceed to the Customs Cashier and pay the relevant fees after the entry is passed by Customs.
  • Proceed to the port or warehouse and pay the relevant local handling charges and storage fee if applicable.
  • The warehouse operator will locate the goods and place them in the examination area.
  • A Customs Officer will be assigned to examine the shipment against the documents presented by the importer/agent. If there are no discrepancies, a Customs Release will be generated.
  • A gate pass will be issued to the importer/agent by the port operator.

 

Track a Declaration

In order to determine the customs value for Customs duty purposes, it is necessary to have full knowledge of the facts relating to the commercial transaction involving the imported goods. The importer is required to furnish a written declaration of facts, on the forms prescribed by the Commissioner within the provision of Sections 222 and 258 of the Customs Act, in addition to the import entry and the commercial documents.

The prescribed are Forms C84 if Method 1 is being used and Form C85 if any other Methods are being used.

 

In the Declaration of Particulars, the importer must state whether:


  1. any payment in addition to the invoice price has been or will be made, and that all relevant invoices and information included in contractual arrangements have been submitted,
  2. the importer is related to the foreign supplier and whether the price has been influenced by this relationship,
  3. any part of the proceeds of later resale will accrue directly or indirectly to the seller, etc. (Reference: Paragraph 8(1)(d) of the Schedule).

If the imported goods are not the subjects of a sale, this also has to be stated in the declaration at line seven (7) of the C85 (e.g. goods sent on consignment to an agent or transferred to a branch or samples sent free of charge).

 

Importer’s responsibilities


  1. For valuation purposes, the importer is required to calculate and declare a value for duty on the Customs entry documents that meet all of the requirements of the valuation provisions of the Customs Act, Regulations and Administrative Policies.
  2. It is the practice and a requirement under the regulations that an importer hires a customs broker to transact his Customs business where the value of the imports exceeds US$5000 whether or not the consignment is personal effects or for commercial use. (See Regulations 147(c)). Note that it is the importer, and not the broker or authorized agent, who is ultimately responsible and liable for the correct declaration of the Customs value.
  3. All documentary evidence to support the declared value may not need to accompany each entry, but should be available for Customs review when required. It is the responsibility of any person concerned with the importation of goods to maintain, in a manner that facilitates Customs review, all information and records used in the determination and declaration of the value for duty. See Regulations 26 and 147(b) and Section 223 of the Customs Act.

    Cases where a declaration of Particulars may be unnecessary:


  4. It is general practice to dispense with the written declaration of Particulars in certain cases, such as:
  • non-commercial importation by passengers;
  • importation of a value not exceeding US$1000;
  • free of charge goods of a value less than US $1,000 imported as a part of a larger consignment;
  • where the nature of the Customs procedures and/or legislation to which the goods are subject do not require submission of a Declaration of Particulars.

 

Who can sign the Declaration of Particulars Form?


The Declaration of Particulars form can be signed by any of the following person:

  1. The actual importer if an individual
  2. A partner in the case of a partnership
  3. A director or the secretary in the case of an incorporated company
  4. Any employee duly authorised in writing by one of the persons mentioned above.

Note: An in-house broker can sign the declaration form (C84 or 85) only if he is authorised to do so on a C73. However, the authorization form (C73) must be filed with the Department.

Importers using the transaction value method (method 1) should use the C84 form and are required to complete this form and sign at box 27. All questions regarding the transaction between the seller and the buyer should be answered. The transaction value should be calculated taking into account the adjustments under Paragraphs 8 and 9 of the Schedule or where appropriate. The reverse of the form will capture this calculation and will ensure that the importer considers all the elements or components necessary and is required to be added to or deducted from the price paid to arrive at the value for duty. If there is more than one invoice, then the importer should combine all invoice values to complete lines 11 – 25 using the first invoice column.

If value for duty cannot be determined under the transaction value method then the goods must be valued under a subsequent method and the C85 form must be used. Importers using one of these other methods must visit the Valuation Verification Unit for guidance in arriving at the value for duty before preparing the import entry (C78) form. They are required to take all the relevant information and documents relating to the imported goods to determine the value. Both sides of the form must be completed and the declaration signed at Box 27.

 

Personal Exporting

Listed below are the steps necessary for the exportation of Personal Items

BY AIR

  1. Collect Tally Sheet and Dispatch Form from airline and complete both
  2. Prepare Export Entry (Form C82). Affix $5 worth of stamps to the Entry
  3. Submit forms in 1 and 2 above to the Customs Officer for processing
  4. Proceed to cashier for payment of Processing Fee
  5. Return Export Entry to Customs Officer and collect customer’s copies of Export Entry, Tally sheet and Dispatch Form
  6. Exporter takes goods to airlines warehouse for weighing, security checks and payment of airline fees

 

BY SEA

  1. Collect dock receipt from shipping agent
  2. Prepare 4 copies of list of items to be exported
  3. Prepare Export Entry
  4. Submit items 1 to 3 to the Customs Officer for processing, along with permits (if necessary)
  5. Proceed to Cashier for payment of Processing Fee

 

NB The exporter must register with JAMPRO if personal items are being exported on a regular basis.
The services of a licensed Customs Broker can be procured, if the exporter is unfamiliar with the export process.

 

Protecting The Country

One of the roles of the Customs Department is the protection of the borders of our country. This includes protection from all goods or products that are deemed harmful to our nation. Harmful goods have traditionally been thought of as guns, ammunition and illicit drugs, but the category extends beyond that to include agricultural products which, if not properly monitored on importation, can result in the spread of disease and pests.

The Customs Department executes its role to protect our borders, by performing agency functions on behalf of other government departments and ministries. These departments and ministries are guided by laws, which dictate the necessity of using import permits or licenses for the importation of certain goods. If you attempt to bring these goods into the country without the required permits or licenses, Customs has the authority to confiscate them, as well as impose fines, as this represents a breach of Customs regulations.

Below is a list of some items that require permits/licenses and the agencies from which they can be obtained:

  • Meat - Obtain a certificate from the Ministry of Agriculture, contact number- 927-1731
  • Ground Provisions - Obtain a Phyto Sanitary Certificate from the Ministry of Agriculture, contact number- 927-1731
  • Fruits & Vegetables - Obtain a Phyto Sanitary Certificate from the Ministry of Agriculture, contact number- 927-1731
  • Drugs - Obtain a PSD Certificate from the Ministry of Health, contact number - 926-9220
  • Firearms- Obtain a Permit/Licence to Import from the Police/ Commissioner of Customs/Trade Board 927-4421, 922-5140-8, 926-3130
  • Used Tyres - Obtain a Certificate from the Bureau of Standards, contact number: 926-3140-6
  • Radios (two-way) - Obtain a Permit from the Post Master General, contact number: 922-9430

 

Commercial Exporting

Register with Jamaica Trade & Invest (formerly JAMPRO) AT www.jexporter.com

Registration is required only for individuals or entities exporting goods on a commercial basis or for the purpose of trade which will result in the generation of revenue. An exporter is not required to register under the following circumstances:

  • Shipments that have been classified as personal effects or non-commercial which will not result in revenue generation (customs form C87).
  • Goods have been imported for temporary use and are to be subsequently re-exported (customs form C87).
  • These could be items imported for a trade show or racing cars brought in for a racing event.
  • Goods are being exported for subsequent re-importation (customs form C87).
  • An example of such a situation would be goods returned to a foreign manufacturer for repairs to be carried out.
  • Goods for which duty was paid and subsequently re-exported (customs form C87).

Permission must be sought from the Collector of Customs prior to exportation. An example would be that of goods being returned to a supplier because of incorrect specifications or failure to meet Bureau of Standards requirements. These goods are not expected to re-enter the country. Depending on the circumstance the duties paid may be refunded.

 

Apply for the necessary Permits/Licences at the following Agencies:

  1. TRADE BOARD

Certificate of Origin , CARICOM Certificate, CB 1 Form, EUR 1 Form, GSP Form (A), to exempt from payment of Customs duties or for payment of partial duties when exporting to certain countries.

Items requiring a licence from the Trade Board include :

  • Ammunition ( Firearms & Explosives)
  • Crocodiles
  • Eggs
  • Antique Furniture
  • Gold Bullion & fully or semi- manufactured gold including jewelry
  • Jewelry (excluding those from earth metals)
  • Ores—Minerals & metals including bauxite, alumina & gypsum
  • Paintings (antique)
  • Plasma in any form
  • Sugar
  • Wood—Lignum Vitae and logwood only.
  • Petroleum products
  • Motor vehicles
  • Shells (subject to the Convention Of International Trade in Endangered

Species administered by NEPA

  • Live Animals( subject to the Convention Of International Trade in Endangered

Species administered by NEPA

  • Pimento
  1. MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE
  • Veterinary Division — Animals and animal products
  • Plant Quarantine Division — Plants and plant products including spice and pimento greater than 2 lbs.
  • Mines & Geology Unit — Rocks, stones, soil, alumina, cement
  1. COFFEE INDUSTRY BOARD — Permit
  • Green coffee beans
  • Roasted coffee over 10lbs / 5 kgs.
  1. COCONUT INDUSTRY BOARD
  • Commercial coconut products (with the intention of generating revenue) including samples.
  1. NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL & PLANNING AGENCY (NEPA) Export Permit
  • Conch
  • Coral
  1. BUREAU OF STANDARDS - Certificate
  • For processed food (such as ackee)

 

STEPS WHEN EXPORTING BY SEA

  • Complete booking with shipping company
  • Complete E-SAD within ASYCUDA WORLD 
  • Scan and Upload Commercial Invoice and requisite regulatory approvals (permits)
  • Contact Jamaica Customs Contraband Enforcement Unit 24 hours before loading goods into container. Contact numbers are 923 7641 or 7573912
  • Complete Dock Receipt issued by shipping agent
  • Present dock receipt to wharf office (pay security fee)
  • Submit completed entry form, dock receipt and
  • Pay customs processing fee ($3005)
  • Deliver cargo to wharf

 

STEPS WHEN EXPORTING BY AIR

  • Complete customs entry, invoice, certificate / permit (where applicable), tally sheet and dispatch form.
  • Contact Jamaica Customs Contraband Enforcement Unit 24 hours before delivering goods to the airline. Contact numbers are 923 7641 or 7573912
  • Present documents and goods to export officer for checking, signing and numbering.
  • Pay customs processing fee ($3005)
  • Deliver cargo to *airline's warehouse
  • Present tally sheet along with dispatch form to the airline representative who will facilitate the entry of goods into the warehouse.
  • * Some airline may require prior booking.

About us

Mission Statement
To facilitate trade, protect our borders, optimise revenue collection, through collaborative border management and delivery of high quality customer services and to develop and maintain a team of motivated professional and competent staff.

           

Jamaica Customs Agency

Customs House
Myers Wharf,
Newport East, Kingston 15
Phone: 876 922 5140-8 | 922 8770-3

Corporate Office
2-4 King Street, Kingston
Phone: 876 948 5151

Opening Hours
Monday - Thursday: 8:00am - 5:00pm
Friday: 8:00am - 4:00pm

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