Coronavirus Alarm Bells Ring in North Block - 24x7 Customs Clearance in All Sea Ports, Airports and ICDs to Clear Cargo

      No Instructions on Creating 24x7 Availability of Trained Staff or Infrastructure of Logistics and Banks, there is already a shortage of Trained Staff

      Cargo Volumes from China has fallen Steeply, Idling Staff Costs will be Up

[CBIC Instruction 02 /2020-Customs dated 20 February 2020]

Subject: 24x7 clearance

Kind reference is invited to various Board Circulars vide which facility of 24x7 Customs clearance has been provided at designated Sea ports & Airports across the country.

2. Due to ongoing shutdown in China on account of Coronavirus outbreak, there is an apprehension of disruption in supply of raw materials/ inputs to our industrial units which were dependent on these raw materials. There could also be a dip in offtake in exports to China. On the contrary, there is a strong likelihood of an immediate surge in the imports from and export to China once the spread of the virus is brought fully under control.

3. To handle such emergent situations, necessary steps need to be taken in advance. CBIC has, therefore, decided to introduce 24x7 clearance at all the Customs formations. so as to address any congestion or delay or surge on account of the prevailing conditions or cessation thereof. These instructions would remain in operation till end of May 2020 by which time the disruptions in the supply chains are expected to have settled. CRCL labs would also function 24x7 so that test results could be made available at the earliest. However, designated Sea Ports I Air ports already under 24x7 operation shall continue to function so even after May, 2020.

4. Chief Commissioners are therefore requested to immediately workout the arrangement and deployment of sufficient number of officers on 24x7 basis at sea ports I Air Cargo Stations I ICDs/CFSs etc falling in their jurisdiction to tackle any incipient instance of congestion/ surge. A record may be maintained of the BEs/SBs filed beyond the normal office hours, station wise, and reported to Board daily at vineetasinha.irs@gov.in.

5. Suitable Public Notice/Standing Order may be issued

F. No. 450/25/2009-Cus.IV (Pt. II)