The Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) has invited suggestions to review the Customs laws and procedures and the Customs Duty Exemption Notifications. These suggestions are invited from all stakeholders such as importers, exporters, domestic industry, trade associations and the public at large.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Budget for 2020-21 had announced that a review of existing Customs exemption notifications would be undertaken to identify those notifications which may have outlived their utility or have become outdated.

The aim of this endeavor is to reconcile the Customs laws and procedures with the needs of contemporary times.

Beginning the process to review existing exemptions and laws of Customs, the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) has invited suggestions from stakeholders on aligning the rules with the needs of changing times and ease of doing business. The CBIC has invited comments on the same by August 21, 2020. A comprehensive review would be undertaken in September. The CBIC stated:

“In this context, suggestions are invited in respect of review of existing Customs exemption notifications in prescribed format below. The suggestions may include “the need for review of a particular notification, Amendment in wording of the notification for bringing clarity, Consolidation of similar entries and Extent of use of the notification,”

It, however, said that duty rate changes are considered usually as part of the Budget proposals and hence this review would not cover this. Sitharaman in her Budget had announced that suggestions would be invited for review of the Customs laws and procedures for aligning them with the needs of changing times and ease of doing business.

It may be recalled that Finance Minister, in the Budget 2020-21 Speech, proposed to crowd- source suggestions to review the Customs Duty Exemption Notifications.  In light of this, the MyGov Innovate portal has been established for the general public to provide their suggestions online. The last date to offer suggestions is 21st of August 2020.

Sitharaman in her Budget speech said that exemptions from customs duty have been given in public interest from time to time and the government will comprehensively review these exemptions in September for taking a view on their relevance.