Obligations of the holder of the Union Transit Procedure and of the Carrier and Recipient of goods moving under Union Transit Procedure

Malta, along with all other parties to the Common Transit Convention, has been investigating the high number of undischarged movements in NCTS. It has become clear that a major reason for non-discharge is that good and/or the TAD are not being presented to Customs at the Office of Destination. In some cases, customs declarations are being made without reference to transit while in others no customs declarations are being made at all.

Some Consignees are not recognising the TAD as an official document and are not aware of their responsibilities according to the law.

This notice draws attention to the legal responsibilities of importers and carriers and explains what Customs are doing to promote compliance. Article 233 of Regulation (EU) No 952/2013 (the Union Customs Code) provides that the principal is responsible for producing goods intact, within prescribed time limits, at the Customs Office of Destination. The Article goes on to provide that a carrier or recipient of goods who accepts goods knowing that they are moving under Community Transit is also responsible for meeting these obligations. The provisions are replicated in the Common Transit Convention.

Principals, carriers and consignees should ensure that they know when goods are moving under transit and make the necessary arrangements to comply with procedures. They should also ensure that both they and their employees are able to recognize a TAD as an official document. In a transit movement under the NCTS ‘Normal Procedure’, the TAD accompanies the goods and both it and the goods must be presented to Customs at the nominated Office of Destination. Customs retain the TAD and send an NCTS arrival message. If a TAD is included with paperwork received by the consignee there is a strong presumption that the transit movement has not been completed. In such circumstances the consignee should contact Customs immediately.

It is important to note that failure to fulfil these obligations may constitute offences in terms of the Union Customs Code (Reg (EU) No 952/2013) and/or of the Customs Ordinance (Chap. 37) and, consequently, subject to penalties/criminal offences.

Alan Mamo
Director Compliance & Systems

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