New Customs Legislation is on its way

There are a number of issues that become relevant with the implementation of the new Acts.

We can help you get ready for the new Customs Acts


The current legislative framework governing South Africa’s customs and excise is the Customs and Excise Act 91 of 1964.

This Act is over 50 years old, and and is transforming the national trade system, process and policy in line with international systems in the field of imports and exports.
The current customs legislation is to be replaced by following three New Acts:

1) Customs Control Act, 31 of 2014, that establishes a customs control system for all goods imported into, or exported, from the Republic and that prescribes the operational aspects of the system;

2) Customs Duty Act 30 of 2014, that provides for the imposition, assessment and collection of customs duties; and

3) Excise Duty Act, 1964 (i.e. the Customs and Excise Act, 1964, as amended by the Customs and Excise Amendment Act, 32 of 2014) that provides for the imposition, assessment and collection of excise duties and related levies. This Act will be rewritten in the second phase of the project.


Questions regarding the new Customs Acts?

With the new Acts on their way our consultants can help you answer these questions:

1) What import and export licences do we have to re-apply for and how?

2) Are we aware on how these New Acts are going to affect our business?

3) Do we have to change our  processes and policies?

4) Is our business able to efficiently move goods while staying trade compliant with New Acts?

5) How transparent and trade compliant is my business?

6) How can my business smoothly transition from the current Act to the implementation of  the New Acts?

7) Does my business have to alter the way it operates, controls and manages moving goods in the face of this changing regulation?

We can help you answer these and get New Customs Ready.  Email us below.


SARS  launched thw following dedicated website for updates on the new Customs legislation  click on the following link.

Implications of the new legislation

There are a number of issues that become relevant with the implementation of the new Acts.

Re-registration. The proposed acts require all existing and new importers, exporters and any special manufacturing warehouse to re-register within 30 days of the Customs Control Act effective date. This will be part of the initial implemenation of the New Acts.

Increased focus on Customs compliance.  All tax legislation has strict compliance requirements and the new Acts are no exception. There will also be new stringent compliance measures and changes for traders.

Introduction of the Notion of Self assessment. In terms of this notion, persons liable for duties are required, as part of the clearance process, to make their own tariff classification, value determination and origin determination of the goods, to assess the amount of any tax applicable to the goods and to pay tax according to their own assessment. The role of Customs is focused on verification of the self-assessment rather than on assessing the amount of tax itself.

Responsibilities and accountability of directors and employees. This is a key area of focus in the new legislation and will require careful consideration.

General Clearance and release processes: The New Acts will change the timing of certain clearance procedures, and subject them to strict time constraints.

Treatment of Movements within SACU: Treatment of the movement of goods within the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) will be treated as imports and exports. This is contrary to the current customs legislation.

Penalties Regime and Advance Rulings : More severe penalties for non-compliance and greater clarity on who is responsible for compliance.   Advance rulings will become available.

Reporting requirements:  Additional reporting requirements  and changes in data retention management  is likely to increase the levels of responsibility and accountability that customs stakeholders need to show.

Improved and tested knowledge.  As part of the drive for improved compliance, SARS will be implementing tests for representatives of companies that wish to register as importers or exporters that will have to be passed by representatives before new registrations will be issued.  This will have far-reaching implications as most companies simply outsource their Customs function to their clearing agent (now to be known as a Customs broker).  In terms of the new legislation, there will have to be an acceptable level of knowledge within the company.

Important hand-over processes.  As we move from the old Act to the new Act, there are hand-over processes to be considered.

We can help you get ready for the new Customs Acts



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