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Import Processing Charges (Amendment and Repeal) Amendment Bill 2004

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2002-2003

 

 

THE PARLIAMENT OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA

 

 

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 

 

 

import processing charges (amendment and repeal) amendment BILL 2003

 

 

EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Circulated by authority of the Minister for Justice and Customs,

Senator the Honourable Christopher Martin Ellison)



import processing charges (amendment and repeal) amendment BILL 2003

OUTLINE

1.                This Bill amends the Import Processing Charges (Amendment and Repeal) Act 2002 to extend certain charges in the Import Processing Charges Act 1997 to complement the transitional provisions being enacted in the Customs Legislation Amendment (Application of International Trade Modernisation and Other Measures) Bill 2003.

FINANCIAL IMPACT STATEMENT

2.                The reduction of entry processing charges after turn-off time is expected to reduce revenue by $0.452M.

3.                The other measures in the Bill have no financial impact.



import processing charges (amendment and repeal) amendment BILL 2003

NOTES ON CLAUSES

Part 1 - preliminary

Clause 1 - Short title

4.                This clause provides for the Bill, when enacted, to be cited as the Import Processing Charges (Amendment and Repeal) Amendment Act 2003 .

Clause 2 - Commencement.

5.                Subclause (1) provides that each provision of this Bill specified in column 1 of the table in that subclause commences or is taken to have commenced on the day or at the time specified in column 2 of the table.

Item 1 of the table provisions that sections 1 to 3 and anything not elsewhere covered by the table commences on the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent.  Sections 1 to 3 are the title, commencement and enabling provisions.

Item 2 provides that the substantive provisions of this Bill in Schedule 1 commence at the same time as section 19 of the Customs Legislation Amendment (Application of International Trade Modernisation and Other Measures) Act 2003 commences.  Section 19 commences on the later of the start of the day on which that Act receives the Royal Assent and the time when item 38 of Schedule 3 to the Customs Legislation Amendment and Repeal (International Trade Modernisation) Act 2001 (the ITM Act) commences.  Item 38 replaces many of the import provisions of the Customs Act.  It has not commenced yet but will commence on 20 July 2005 unless it is proclaimed to commence earlier.

Clause 3 - Schedule(s)

6.                This clause is the formal enabling provision for the Schedule(s) to the Bill, providing that each Act specified in a Schedule is amended in accordance with the applicable items of the Schedule.  In this Bill the Import Processing Charges (Amendment and Repeal) Act 2002 is being amended.

7.                The clause also provides that the other items of the Schedules have effect according to their terms.  This is a standard enabling clause for transitional, savings and application items in amended legislation.



Schedule 1 - Amendments

Import Processing Charges (Amendment and Repeal) Act 2002

Background to current Charges Acts

8.                The Import Processing Charges Act 1997 (the 1997 IPC Act) and the Import Processing Charges Act 2001 (the 2001 IPC Act) impose and set out the cost recovery charges relating to the importation and reporting of goods.  The 2001 IPC Act sets out those charges that will be payable when the imports and cargo reporting provisions of the ITM Act commence.  These provisions will commence on 20 July 2005 unless they are proclaimed to commence earlier.  The 1997 IPC Act sets out the current charges that are payable.  That Act was repealed in 2002 but it continues to operate via section 5 of the Import Processing Charges (Amendment and Repeal) Act 2002 (the IPC (Amendment and Repeal) Act) until all of the imports and cargo reporting provisions of the ITM Act commence.

Background to transitional provisions

9.                The ITM Act makes substantial changes to the Customs Act 1901 (the Customs Act).  The changes relating to monitoring and examination powers, infringement notices, record retention obligations and certain offences were proclaimed to commence on 1 July 2002.  The remainder of the changes haven’t commenced and are awaiting the development of a new computer system (the Integrated Cargo System or ICS) by the Australian Customs Service (Customs). 

10.              Currently the Customs Act sets out the computer systems that must be used to communicate with Customs.  The Air Cargo Automation System (ACA) and Sea Cargo Automation System (SCA) are used to make reports relating to the arrival of ships and aircraft and cargo, COMPILE is used to make import entries and refund applications and EXIT is used to make export entries.  All of the provisions relating to specific systems will be replaced by provisions that either require or permit electronic communications to be sent to Customs.  The CEO will then be required to establish and maintain electronic systems for people to communicate with Customs.  The Customs Act will no longer refer to specific computer systems and the new information technology requirements that have to be met in order to communicate with Customs will be set out in gazette notices.

11.              The Customs Legislation Amendment (Application of International Trade Modernisation and Other Measures) Act 2003 contains detailed application and transitional provisions that will operate when the imports, cargo and arrival reporting provisions of the ITM Act commence.  The transitional provisions set out when the unamended Customs Act (that is the Customs Act before the imports and cargo reporting provisions of the ITM Act commence) and the amended Customs Act (the Customs Act with the import and cargo reporting provisions) will apply.  Since charges are only payable in respect of cargo reports and import entries, the following description is limited to them.

12.              The Chief Executive Officer of Customs will be required to set an import cut-over time and turn-off time.  For goods on board a ship or aircraft due to arrive in its first port or airport in Australia before import cut-over time cargo reports and import entries in respect of those goods will have to be made under the unamended Customs Act.  Those made in respect of goods on board a ship or aircraft due to arrive at or after import cut-over time, will be made under the amended Customs Act.

13.              Any cargo reports and import entries required to be made under the unamended Customs Act after turn-off time will have to be made by document (and cannot be made by computer).

Continuation of the 1997 Charges Act

14.              Hence it is necessary to continue the operation of the 1997 Charges Act for the import entries and cargo reports made under the unamended Customs Act up until turn-off time. 

15.              Further since it is possible for these to be made by document for some time after the turn-off time some the charges (as modified) needed to extend beyond turn-off time.  Cargo report processing charge is only payable in respect of documentary cargo reports and the charge for making a documentary import entry is higher than for a computer entry.  Since people will not be able to make those reports and entries by computer after the turn-off time and people may be disadvantaged by that, it is proposed to remove the cargo report processing charge from turn-off time and lower the import entry processing charge for documentary import entries so that it is the same as for computer import entries.

16.              Item 1 repeals and substitutes subsection 5(2) of the IPC (Amendment and Repeal) Act 2002 to:

16.1.continue to impose cargo report processing charge under the 1997 IPC Act until turn-off time;

16.2.continue to impose screening charge under the 1997 IPC Act until all cargo reports under the unamended Customs Act have been made (the screening charge for computer and documentary cargo reports is the same);

16.3.continue the entry processing charge under the 1997 IPC Act until all import entries under the unamended Customs Act have been made.

17.              New subsection 5(3) modifies the entry processing charges so that the lower charge for making a computer import entry will apply to documentary import entries made after turn-off time.

18.              New subsection 5(4) defines the terms unamended Customs Act, cargo report, import entry, turn-off time and unamended Customs Act.