“Understanding International Trade, Tariff and Customs” authored by customs and trade expert Atty Agaton Uvero was launched recently at the Makati Shangri-La before guests from the customs, trade and logistics communities, including several former Customs commissioners.
The book is a thorough discussion of Philippine customs and trading rules in easy-to-understand language. It explains major provisions of the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act (CMTA) or Republic Act No. 10863 (An Act Modernizing the Customs and Tariff Administration). The CMTA updates the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines (TCCP) and overhauls Bureau of Customs (BOC) operations. It simplifies and harmonizes customs procedures, pushes for full customs automation, and aligns the TCCP with international standards and practices, ultimately making it easier for traders, importers and exporters to comply with border requirements. It was signed into law in May 2016.
The 300+-page book is a publication of Asia Customs & Trade (ACT), an online portal on news and developments affecting global trade and customs compliance in Asia. It provides trade intelligence through industry updates and features; columns written by customs and trade professionals and experts; and specially commissioned reports. ACT also conducts across Asia seminars and conferences on key customs and trade regulations.
“Understanding International Trade, Tariff and Customs” contains notes pertaining to specific titles, chapters and sections of the CMTA. It provides the specific sources of each section in relation to the old TCCP, the National Internal Revenue Code, the Revised Kyoto Convention, the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement, and other Philippine laws and regulations.
A few of Uvero’s columns, originally published in PortCalls, a sister publication of ACT, also found their way in the book. The columns cover more than a decade of research and study, providing discussions and advice on topics involving the WTO, preferential trading under ASEAN and other free trade agreements, customs valuation and classification, customs compliance and audit, transfer pricing, logistics and supply chain, and Authorized Economic Operators, among many others.
“International trade, tariff and customs is a multidisciplinary field that is both intricate and evolving. Philippine customs rules and practices have remained nebulous, complex and tedious. And yes, customs in general has remained the ‘weak link’ in the supply chain,” Uvero, a former Bureau of Customs deputy commissioner for Assessment and Operations, said at the launch.
“In the Philippines, there is an obvious dearth of information and training opportunities in the field of international trade and customs, and companies and professionals engaged in the import and export of goods are in constant need to be brought up to date, grabbing at any opportunity for learning,” he added.
The book, he noted, “aims to address that need for research, information and study. It compiles my writings on a field that some still view as obscure and highly technical—the field now known as ‘international trade and customs’.”
Liza Almonte, publisher of ACT and PortCalls, also at the launch said, “In ‘Understanding International Trade, Tariff and Customs’, (Uvero) gives us the what and the why of the CMTA, including what he says is its ‘legislative intent’. He highlights key provisions of the law, identifies where the old and new regulations diverge, and provides insights and practical discussions on the complex subjects of customs and tariff administration.”
She concluded, “We are certain this book will be useful to students of Customs, trade and related disciplines–whether they are in school or in the ports, warehouses, or any other environment where goods require cross-border transportation.”
For more details on the book, email firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com or call (63) 551-775, 551-3871, 552-7072.