Customs News Bulletin

7 April 2014

 

Latest International Trade News

 

ESTABLISHMENT OF STATUTORY MEASURES ON COTTON AND COTTON LINT (with effect from 1 April 2014)

Three notices have been published to establish statutory measures on cotton and cotton lint under the Marketing of Agricultural Products Act, 1996 (Act No. 47 of 1996) with effect from 1 April 2014.

The notices relate to:

    Records and returns by exporters, importers, processors and purchasers of cotton (Notice No. 198 of
28 March 2014
);

    Registration of exporters, importers, processors, producers and purchasers of cotton (Notice No. 199 of 28 March 2014); and

    Levy relating to cotton lint (Notice No. 200 of 28 March 2014).

The Notices have been published in Government Gazette 37461 of 28 March 2014. The measures above will lapse on 31 March 2018.

Download the notices for more information.

 

REQUEST FOR ESTABLISHMENT OF STATUTORY MEASURES RELATING TO LEVIES, REGISTRATION AND RECORDS AND RETURNS ON IMPORTED CHICKEN PRODUCTS IN TERMS OF THE MARKETING OF AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTS ACT (Comments due by 11 April 2014)

The Association of Meat Importers and Exporters (AMIE) applied to the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, for the establishment of statutory measures relating to levies, registration, the keeping of records and rendering of returns on imported chicken products.

AMIE  proposed a statutory levy of 2c/kg (excluding VAT) on imported chicken products of various 8-digit subheadings of HS subheadings 0207.12 and 0207.14.

It is estimated that the income from the proposed statutory levies will be between R5,1 million (in 2014/2015) and R5,9 million (for 2017/2018) per year.

The proposed levies will be used to finance the following functions:

         Quality control and consumer assurance;

         Liaison, including consumer education;

         Transformation in the industry;

         Research and development; and

         Administration.

Download  Notice 230 of 2014 for more information.

Enquiries: Mr Ndumiso Mazibuko, National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC), Private Bag X 935, PRETORIA, 0001, Telephone (012) 341 1115, fax (012) 341 1911 or email ndumiso@namc.co.za.

 

AMENDMENT OF REGULATIONS RELATING TO THE REGISTRATION OF FERTILIZERS, FARM FEEDS, AGRICULTURAL REMEDIES, STOCK REMEDIES, STERILIZING PLANTS AND PEST CONTROL OPERATORS, APPEALS AND IMPORTS(with effect from 1 April 2014)

A notice has been published to amend the above regulations under section 23 of the Fertilizers, Farm Feeds, Agricultural Remedies and Stock Remedies Act, 1947 (Act No 36 of 1947).

The amendment relates to fees payable of agricultural inputs by existing importers, local traders/distributors/sellers, manufacturers and in respect of renewals for farm feed registrations.

Provision is also made for additional payment in the case of late application for the renewal of farm feeds registration.

Paragraph 4 in table 1 provides for payment for information and documentation such as import permits.  The amendments have been published under Notice R. 207 of 1 April 2014 in Government Gazette 37468. Download Notice R. 207 for more information. 

 

Customs Tariff Applications and Outstanding Tariff Amendments

Notice 44 of 2014; Notice 45 of 2014

The International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) is responsible for tariff investigations, amendments, and trade remedies in South Africa and on behalf of SACU.

Tariff investigations include:

Increases in the customs duty rates in Schedule 
No. 1 Part 1 of Jacobsens. These applications apply to all the SACU Countries, and, if amended, thus have the potential to affect the import duty rates in Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, Swaziland and South Africa.

Reductions in the customs duty rates in Schedule No. 1 Part 1. These applications apply to all the SACU Countries, and, if amended, thus have the potential to affect the import duty rates in Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, Swaziland and South Africa.

Rebates of duty on products, available in the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), for use in the manufacture of goods, as published in Schedule No. 3 Part 1, and in Schedule No. 4 of Jacobsens. Schedule No. 3 Part 1 and Schedule No. 4 are identical in all the SACU Countries.

Rebates of duty on inputs used in the manufacture of goods for export, as published in Schedule No. 3 Part 2 and in item 470.00. These provisions apply to all the SACU Countries.

Refunds of duties and drawbacks of duties as provided for in Schedule No 5. These provisions are identical in the all the SACU Countries.

Trade remedies include:

Anti-dumping duties (in Schedule No. 2 Part 1 of Jacobsens), countervailing duties to counteract subsidisation in foreign countries (in Schedule No. 2 Part 2), and safeguard duties (Schedule No. 2 Part 3), which are imposed as measures when a surge of imports is threatening to overwhelm a domestic producer, in accordance with domestic law and regulations and consistent with WTO rules.

Dumping is defined as a situation where imported goods are being sold at prices lower than in the country of origin, and also causing financial injury to domestic producers of such goods. In other words there should be a demonstrated causal link between the dumping and the injury experienced. To remedy such unfair pricing, ITAC may, at times, recommend the imposition of substantial duties on imports or duties that are equivalent to the dumping margin (or to the margin of injury, if this margin is lower).

Countervailing investigations are conducted to determine whether to impose countervailing duties to protect a domestic industry against the unfair trade practice of proven subsidised imports from foreign competitors that cause material injury to a domestic producer.

Safeguard measures, can be introduced to protect a domestic industry against unforeseen and overwhelming foreign competition and not necessarily against unfair trade, like the previous two instruments. In the WTO system, a member may take a safeguard action, which is, restricting imports temporarily in the face of a sustained increase in imports that is causing serious injury to the domestic producer of like products. Safeguard measures are universally applied to all countries, unlike anti-dumping and countervailing duties that are aimed at a specific firm or country.

Schedule No. 2 is identical in all the SACU Countries.

ITAC has published the following documents relating to the SACU Tariff and tariff amendment applications:

INCREASE IN THE RATE OF CUSTOMS DUTY ON VITREOUS ENAMALS (HS CODE 3207.20)

 

Ferro Industrial Products (Pty) Ltd  applied for an increase in the rate of customs duty on vitreous enamel, classifiable under tariff subheading 3207.20 from free to 20%. Comments were due by 21 March 2014.

 

Download the document  at http://www.gov.za/documents/download.php?f=210254

 

ITAC has also published the following documents:

International Trade Administration Act: Final determination in the investigation into the alleged dumping of coated paper originating in or imported from China and Korea Gazette 37337 General Notice 110; and

International Trade Administration Act: Initiation of a sunset review of the anti-dumping duties on gypsum plasterboard originating in or imported from Indonesia and Thailand: Comments invited G 37337 General Notice  111 - comments by 31 Mar 2014

 

 

Customs Tariff Amendments

With the exception of certain parts of Schedule 
No. 1, such as Schedule No. 1 Part 2 (excise duties), Schedule No. 1 Part 3 (environmental levies) Schedule No. 1 Part 5 (fuel and road accident fund levies), the other parts of the tariff is amended by SARS based on recommendations made by ITAC resulting from the investigations relating to Customs Tariff Applications received by them. The ITAC then investigates and makes recommendations to the Minister of Trade and Industry, who requests the Minister of Finance to amend the Tariff in line with the ITACís recommendations. SARS is responsible for drafting the notices to amend the tariff, as well as for arranging for the publication of the notices in Government Gazettes.

During the annual budget speech by the Minister of Finance in February, it was determined that parts of the tariff that are not amended resulting from ITAC recommendations, must be amended through proposals that are tabled by the Minister of Finance.

Once a year big tariff amendments are published by SARS, which is in line with the commitments of South Africa and SACU under international trade agreements.

Under these amendments, which are either published in November or early in December, the import duties on goods are reduced under South Africaís international trade commitments under existing trade agreements.

Three notices have been published to amend the Customs Tariff of the Southern African Customs Union with effect from 4 April 2014.

The first notice relates to an increase in the rates of duty on sugar from free to 132c/kg into SACU from all territories. See notice R265 of 4 April 2014.  All the subheadings of heading 17.01 have been affected by this amendment.

Consequential to this amendment the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Sugar Agreement has been amended.  Notice R. 232 has been published to facilitate the importation of sugar from one SADC Country to another through tariff rate quota permits, and it is administered in terms of the amendments that have been published under Notice No R. 232 of 4 April 2014.  

The third amendment relates to the creation of three rebate provisions which rebates the import duties on goods imported into SACU conditional to compliance with the rebate provisions which are specified in the notice. Conditions that must be met are classification in the subheadings mentioned, in compliance with the description in terms of ITAC permits and the goods must be used in the manufacture of upholstered furniture of heading 94.01. Only manufacturers who are registered under these provisions qualify for the rebates. The normal rates of duty in Schedule 1 Part 1 apply to any other importer that are not registered. See Notice No. R. R23 of 4 April 2014.

 

Subscribers will soon be able to view a PDF version of the tariff book supplements at new.jacobsens.co.za.  

Download the latest Customs Watch to have access to the latest tariff and rule amendments.

 

Customs Rule Amendments

The Customs and Excise Act is amended by the Minister of Finance. Certain provisions of the Act are supported by Customs and Excise Rules, which are prescribed by the Commission of SARS. These provisions are numbered in accordance with the sections of the Act. The rules are more user-friendly than the Act, and help to define provisions which would otherwise be unclear and difficult to interpret.

Forms are also prescribed by rule, and are published in the Schedule to the Rules. 

Forms DA 185 and DA 185.4A5 have been amended to change the references to MIDP to APDP.

Notice No. R. 174 published in Gazette No 37422 of 14 March 2014 (DAR/135 refers).

Download the amendments to view the notices.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contact Information:

 

 

Contact the Author:

Mayuri Govender

Jacobsens Editor

Tel: 031-268 3273
e-mail:  
jacobsen@lexisnexis.co.za

 

 

Leon Marais 
Independent Customs Specialist
Tel: 053-203 0727

e-mail: leon.marais@intekom.co.za