Category Archives: Trade Policy & Procedures Simplification

The Networking Committee on Trade Policies and Procedures Simplification (NC-TPPS) shall recommend trade policies that would strengthen the export industry; simplify systems and procedures pertinent to export to reduce the (a) cost of doing business, ( b) processing time, (c) steps, (d) signatures and optimize the use of Information Technology.

BOC upholds strict implementation of its Online Release System  

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) upholds the strict implementation of the Online Release System (OLRs) effective on 11 January 2021. It requires the proper format of the registry number when filling out the export Single Administrative Document (SAD) in the Electronic-to-Mobile (E2M) system. Clerical errors due to incorrect registry numbers indicated in the export declaration is subjected to a PHP 5,000.00 fine as stipulated under AOCG Memo 25-2021 ‘Guidelines on the Wrong Encoding of Registry Numbers in the Export Declaration in the E2M System’ in accordance with CAO 1-2020.

The OLRS is used in processing imports and exports to ensure that duties and taxes were paid before goods were released outside the BOC Jurisdiction.
Continue reading BOC upholds strict implementation of its Online Release System  

Export boost expected from the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership

Export Boost is to be expected from the recently signed Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). It will broaden trade in goods and services, deepening economic integration among the 10 Southeast Asian countries, South Korea, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand.  By far, this is the world’s largest trading agreement bloc covering 30% of the global economic output in the coming years.

RCEP is a “modern and comprehensive type of FTA,” said the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez. “…RCEP will cover a lot more areas, not just trade in goods but also in services, investment, intellectual property, micro-SME, e-commerce. New items are now included in the RCEP, better market access for automotive cars, garments, electronics, and even for services such as legal accounting and engineering…” he added. Continue reading Export boost expected from the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership

BOC grants certified exporters to self-certify CO application under the AWSC scheme

The ASEAN Wide Self Certification Scheme (AWSC) allows exporters, who have proven their competence, to be eligible for the preferential treatment under the ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA) through self-certification. As such, application of the Certificate of Origin (CO) Form D is no longer required once an exporter qualified the Certified Exporters (CE) status. However, e-Form D and paper-based Form D will still be used by the exporters who have not acquired the CE status. This will bring practical benefits, reducing cost and shipment delays, in processing export cargoes even during non-work hours and weekends.

The Bureau of Customs’ Export Coordination Division (BOC-ECD) will recommend to the BOC Assessment and Operations Coordinating Group (AOCG) to grant exporters the CE statusEligibility criteria includes the exporter/signatory of the certificate to have an in-depth knowledge about the Rules of Origin (ROO) procedures. CE are obliged to submit a quarterly summary report of all Origin Declarations to the ECD.  Continue reading BOC grants certified exporters to self-certify CO application under the AWSC scheme

Environmental Management Bureau defers implementation of General Effluent Standards

The Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) of the Department of Environment and National Resources defers the implementation of the General Effluent Standards (GES) under DAO- 2016-08. Said standards applies to all point sources of pollution, regardless of volume, that discharge to receiving body of water or land and shall be used regardless of the industry category.

A Technical Committee, Sub-Committees, Core Group, and Secretariat were created for the review and assessment of the Water Quality Guidelines and General Effluent Standards of 2016 based on EMB’s special order.

With the ongoing review, implementation of Dissolved Copper, Sulfate, Boron, Phosphate, and Ammonia, under the GES of DAO 2016-08 is recommended to be postponed until the amended DAO-2016-08 is approved. This initiative will help exporters to cut additional penalty charges in compliance with the said GES policy. –MRJ

PRRD Signed Instrument of Accession (ATA Carnet) to boost Export Promotions 

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte (PRRD) signed the “Instrument of Accession” for the Convention of Temporary Admission of Goods (ATA Carnet), also called the Istanbul Convention last 23 June 2020. The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) already transmitted the signed Instrument to the House of Senate for concurrence by two-thirds (2/3) votes of its members.

This will boost export promotions by allowing more exporters to send commercial samples, professional equipment and articles to their foreign buyers; and participate in trade fairs, shows, and exhibits without Customs formalities hence reducing cost and time spent in complying with the procedures.

“The system will facilitate Customs controls, therefore reducing the time spent for crossing borders of the goods within over 80 ATA Carnet member countries and territories which is a common practice in the supply chain.  This will also contribute to the promotion of trade and open up new and bigger market opportunities overseas once we are ready to host and attend trade fairs again,” EDC Chairman, DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez said in a statement.

Being part of the Carnet System is a great opportunity for the country’s economy (i.e. M.I.C.E. Tourism) to restore and flourish international film making, exhibits, and conventions after this COVID-19 pandemic. DTI said that it will assist Filipino exporters “to access key target markets such as China, USA, EU, Japan, and UAE – all of which are signatories to the ATA Carnet.”

“We are thankful that finally, the Instrument of Accession has been signed, giving a positive signal to the world that we are serious in expanding our trade, particularly our exports.” PHILEXPORT President and EDC Vice Chairman Sergio Ortiz-Luis, Jr. said.

Also, the EDC endorses the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) as accredited by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) to be the National Issuing and Guaranteeing Association (NIGA) for the ATA Carnet and further requested the Bureau of Customs (BOC) to be ready for the Issuance of the CMO in time the Senate has concurred the Instrument of Accession (ATA Carnet). MRJ

EU-REX application extended! Exporters to enjoy  preferential tariffs 

The Registered Exporters ‘REX’ System application was extended until 31 December 2020. This is intended for registered Filipino exporters to fully avail zero tariffs to over 6,000 categories of goods to the European Union (EU) nations under the EU Generalized System of Preferences plus (EU-GSP+) Program.

The Bureau of Customs (BOC) deferred the 30 June 2020 implementation to 31 December 2020, to give more time for the exporters to submit their EU REX application thru Further guidelines are stipulated under CMO 50-2019.

EU will no longer accept the CO Form A after the aforesaid deadline.

Interested exporters may reach out to either the BOC thru, or the DTI-EMB thru –MRJ  

DOF urges trade regulatory government agencies to fully on-board TradeNet System 

The Department of Finance (DOF), in collaboration with the Department of Information and Communication Technology (DICT), urges all the 76 Trade-Regulatory Government Agencies (TRGAs) to go on-board the TradeNet for a streamlined and electronic system thru the implementation of CMO 15-2019.

The TradeNet allows electronic transmission of the Certificate of Origin (eCO) among ASEAN Member States (AMS) through the system’s connection to the ASEAN Single Window (ASW) that commenced last 30 December 2019.

The DICT owns the source code that makes it more applicable for the Philippines to operate various trade-related applications without the need to pay for a license from a 3rd party. It is also customizable, and the encoded policies can be easily interchanged.

The Philippines has received 37,036 eCOs from other AMS and the BOC has sent 13 eCOs from January 2020 to 20 June 2020 using the TradeNet platform. With more TRGAs onboard the TradeNet, the Philippines can maximize the Free Trade Agreements (FTAs).

The National Single Window Steering Committee is set to convene in July 2020 to create and strategize the onboarding work plan for 2020 to 2022.  –MRJ

FDA implements issuance of e-LTO 


The Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) implements the issuance of electronic License to Operate (e-LTO) to streamline and improve government services through eServices Portal.

LTO applicants for drugstores, retail outlet for non-prescription drugs (RONPD), drug distributors, and drug traders can now print their License conveniently at their home.

All the other FDA centers, including devices and cosmetics, will also be included on the e-portal.

FDA ensures that e-LTO will be processed in less than the 20 working days following the Anti-Red Tape Authority’s (ARTA) guidelines.

FDA Advisory No. 2020-781 was launched last 07 May 2020 and can be accessed thru the e-services portal ( –MRJ

ECQ Bayanihan: PNP-FEO expedites issuance of PTU

The Philippine National Police-Firearms and Explosives Office (PNP-FEO) suspends the ‘Payment first before issuance of Permit to Unload (PTU)’ policy in a Memorandum dated 03 April 2020 ‘Leniency on Policy of Payment for Permit to Unload in Time of Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ)’ followed by a letter dated 06 April 2020, clarifying further the instructions for its implementation.

In lieu of payment first during the ECQ, PTU applicant/s must submit an affidavit of undertaking (notary was also relaxed) along with the necessary documents.

Said memorandum expediting the issuance of PTUs allow stakeholders to pay the aforesaid permit within 30-day after the ECQ has been lifted. It has been proven that during crisis, ”Bayanihan” or strong support with cooperation between government and private sector is essential to address disruption in the supply chain. –MRJ 

Customs implements globally accredited ‘AEO Program’ thru CMO 9-2020

In response for the country’s commitment to the World Customs Organization SAFE framework, the Bureau of Customs (BOC) issued CMO 9-2020 “Implementing the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) Program Established Under CAO 5-2017 for Importers and Exporters” last 16 March 2020. Said memorandum revokes, amends, or modifies CMO 11-2012 and CMO 14-2013 to further beef up the AEO program.

Approval of the stakeholders’ application is based upon obtaining the criteria, followed by the submission of necessary documents in the AEO portal which will soon be accessible at the BOC website.

Moreover, an AEO office is to be established to fully implement and monitor the components of its mandate: Cargo Security System, Trade Clearance Facility, and Mutual Recognition Arrangement.

An AEO member, can be accredited into three (3) levels, to be entitled of privileges, benefits, and exemptions depending on the level applied for.

Implementation of this internationally recognized accreditation, the AEO program, heightened the importers/exporters standards in the global market. -MRJ