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1st phase of All India roll-out of Faceless Assessment - Customs - Instruction No. 09/2020

Extract

..... as and when these Zones are covered by Faceless Assessment (with suitable modifications that may be warranted). 2. For the roll-out of Faceless Assessment across Bengaluru and Chennai Zones, the Principal Chief Commissioners/Chief Commissioners of Customs, Bengaluru and Chennai Zones are required to put in place the following arrangements in their jurisdiction: I. Faceless Assessment Groups: A Faceless Assessment Group would consist of Appraisers/Superintendents and Assistant Commissioners/Deputy Commissioners for verification of assessment of any bill of entry that is assigned to this group in the Customs Automated System. Thus, two Faceless Assessment Groups, one for Chapter 84 and another for Chapter 85 would need to be established. However, depending on the work load the two Faceless Assessment Groups could also be merged into one. The Faceless Assessment Group for each chapter would thus comprise officers of both Bengaluru and Chennai Customs Zones. It is advised that to begin with officers from the existing Appraising Groups for chapter 84 and 85 in each Customs station in each Zone may be made part of the Faceless Assessment Group. However, the Principal Chief Commissioners/ .....

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..... ifferent Customs station/port of import, whenever such a bill of entry has been assigned to him in the Customs Automated System. However, it is clarified that in Phase 1 of the roll-out of Faceless Assessment, this notification will be applied only for inter-linking of Bengaluru and Chennai Customs zones for this purpose. Thus, w.e.f. 8th June, 2020 the Customs Automated System will assign the non-facilitated bills of entry filed for imports of articles primarily falling under Chapters 84 and 85 of the Customs Tariff Act, 1975, at any of the Customs stations/ports of import of Bengaluru and Chennai Customs Zones to the officers of the concerned Faceless Assessment Group for assessment on a first-cum-first basis. In other words, irrespective of whether the goods are imported at any Customs station/port of import falling under the jurisdiction of Bengaluru or Chennai Customs Zone, the bills of entry pertaining to the said two chapters will be marked by the Customs Automated System to the nominated Faceless Assessment Group for assessment. II. Notification No.51/2020-Customs (N.T.) dated 05.06.2020 is issued for the purpose of empowering the jurisdictional Commissioners of Customs (Ap .....

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1st phase of All India roll-out of Faceless Assessment - Customs

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..... take corrective actions with regard to assessments, wherever necessary and provide inputs to the concerned ports of import; IV. Analyse the RMS facilitated bills of entry pertaining to Chapters falling under their purview and advise the DGARM regarding possible interventions or review of risk parameters; V. Liaise with Principal Commissioner/Commissioner of Customs at ports of import with regard to interpretational issues pertaining to classification, valuation, scope of exemption notifications and trade policy conditions; VI. Interact with their sectoral trade and industry for inputs, as well as to resolve their issues relating to assessment; VII. Function as a knowledge hub or repository for that particular Chapter(s); VIII. Examine the orders/appellate orders in relation to assessment practices pertaining to commodities assigned to each Faceless Assessment Group and provide inputs to the Commissionerates for reviewing of such orders so that uniformity of assessment orders could be upheld at legal forums. 5.2 Responsibilities of the Port of Import: 5.2.1 The ports of import would continue to have the Port Assessment Group(s) to cater to all other functions pertaining to the bills .....

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..... such as in the case of a warehouse bill of entry or where the importer has sought provisional assessment or where a claim to any concessional rate of duty or exemption under duty remission/exemption schemes, is subject to filing of Bond/ Bank Guarantee, they should be encouraged to opt for Continuity Bond option, to avoid fresh registration of Bonds every time during filing of bill of entry. III. The bill of entry would be assigned to an officer of the concerned Faceless Assessment Group for verification of assessment purposes by the Customs Automated System. IV. For verification of assessment of the bill of entry, the Faceless Assessment Group may decide to: a) return the bill of entry to the importer for payment of duty after verification on the basis of the declaration made and documents available in e-Sanchit; or b) seek additional information or documents for proceeding with the verification; and/or c) get examination and/or testing of goods carried out, for the determination of duty liability and/or for ensuring the compliance of restriction and prohibition; V. Where the Faceless Assessment Group is of the opinion that additional information or documents are required for pro .....

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..... applicable. c) If the Faceless Assessment Group concludes that the prior testing of goods is going to take considerable time and the bill of entry should be assessed provisionally, they may refer the bill of entry to the PAG at the port of import, following the procedure stipulated in 5.3.2 and clearly specifying the reasons thereof. In such cases, the bill of entry would be assessed by PAG at the port of import, after the receipt of the examination/test report. d) If the imported goods are found to be subject to some restriction or prohibition or mis-declared, on the basis of said test and/or examination report fed by the shed officers at the port of import, the Faceless Assessment Group shall refer the bill of entry to PAG at the port of import for action including action under Section 124 of the Customs Act, 1962. e) It is clarified that, irrespective of pending verification at Faceless assessment Group, if the importer requests for storage of the imported goods in warehouse pending clearance under Section 49 of the Customs Act, 1962, such request shall be processed by officers of the port of import promptly. VIII. The shed officers at the port of import would carry out the nece .....

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..... Assessment Groups, direct the PAG to pull the bill of entry from Faceless Assessment to the PAG in the following situations: a) Where specific alert or intelligence is available pertaining to the said bill of entry or class of bill of entry; and b) Where the Principal Commissioner/Commissioner of Customs has ordered to do so for the reasons to be recorded in writing. Annexures A and B outline the flow of bills of entry covered under Faceless Assessment. 5.4 Speaking Order: I. For any re-assessment done by the Faceless Assessment Group, which is at variance with the self-assessment done by the importer and in cases other than those where the importer confirms his acceptance of the said re-assessment electronically in reply to the query raised by the assessing officer, the Faceless Assessment Groups shall pass a speaking order on the re-assessment, within fifteen days from the date of re-assessment of the bill of entry, as prescribed in section 17(5). II. The Faceless Assessment Groups shall provide an opportunity to be heard to the importer, in accordance with the principles of natural justice, before proceeding with the re-assessment of the bill of entry. In the event a personal he .....

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..... f the required test reports etc from the shed officers at the port of import, the finalisation of provisional assessment shall be done by the officers of PAG of the port of import. 5.9 Amendment of Bills of Entry I. Directorate General of Systems has enabled a facility whereby requests for amendments can be made online via ICEGATE Portal. II. Once the amendments are filed online, System would queue them before the proper officer of the Faceless Assessment Group if the bill of entry is pending for verification. In all other cases, the request would be queued to the proper officer of the Port Assessment Group. III. The facility of online levy of Amendment fees as per Levy of Fees (Customs Documents) Regulations, 1970 has also been enabled. The applicable fee would be included in the duty challan for payment. IV. Requests for amendments as per Section 149 of the Customs Act, 1962, and requests after the bill of entry has been returned for payment by the Faceless Assessment Group shall be processed by the port of import. 5.10 Exchange of communication exclusively by electronic mode and authentication of electronic records: I. For the purposes of Faceless Assessment, all communications .....

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