CHENNAI: Chennai Customs Zone has received 1,200 applications for obtaining Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) certification and the certification has been awarded to 553 applicants, according to M Ajit Kumar, Chief Commissioner of Customs – Chennai Zone.
Speaking at a workshop on AEO organised by Kerry Indev Logistics in association with AEO Cell - Chennai Customs Zone, Ajit Kumar, an alumni of Rashtriya Military School Belgaum, said AEO is a certificate of trustworthiness and it is an internationally recognised quality mark, through which national Customs administrations approve stakeholders in the global supply chain such as importers, exporters, logistics providers and warehouse operators.
Of the 1,200 applications, 477 have been shelved as the applicants did not submit the appropriate documents. “If the required documents are submitted, then the applications will be pursued,” said Customs Commissioner Srinivasa Naik, who was also present on the occasion.
AEO certification is a voluntary accreditation that brings benefits such as Customs simplification and priority treatment. Some of the benefits include a 15-day advantage on duty payment and a new system which is almost fully automated, he said.
Kumar also said the Customs department will introduce from next week Turant Customs, which will result in speedy clearance of goods at air and sea ports. He said he is working to ensure there is less mediation of officials in the entire process. “We want the Customs department to be invisible and urged the businesses to play by the rule to be a winner.
He also highlighted that crores of rupees under IGST funds have gone into loop due to wrong entries. “Due to wrong bank accounts submitted, there is currently no system on whom to pay as the bank accounts are not valid. While we are trying to make customs department invisible, more discipline is requested from the businesses end to ensure it is achieved,” he said.
S Xavier Britto, chairman of Kerry Indev Logistics, spoke on the benefits the company has enjoyed through AEO certification. “The AEO concept itself is in line with our Prime Minister’s vision of Digital India and increases the ease of doing business in India,” he said.