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General changes for Importers

There are some more changes that may affect importers.

There is one more new initiative and several changes to existing functions that may affect your business. The relevant forms and additional information are available on Customs website.The changes that may affect your business are:

New initiative
Comptroller's discretion The Chief Executive of Customs now has explicit statutory guidance to the extent they can use discretion in making and correcting duty assessments and collecting revenue. This statutory guidance would only be applied in legal matters relating to revenue, collections and assessment.
Changes to existing services and functions
Customs-controlled areas (CCA)
CCA fit and proper person People applying, and key personnel within an organisation, must provide evidence that they are a ‘fit and proper person’ when applying for a Customs-controlled area licence.
Prohibited imports or exports Import and export controls can now include digital goods as well as other goods.
Valuation - last sale A new method now applies for deciding the correct Customs value of imported goods. The Customs value will be based on the price from the last sale that occurs immediately before the goods enter New Zealand.
Human remains The Act clarifies that human remains are to be entered in the same way as goods being imported or exported. However, new regulations make it clear that human remains imported or exported for burial or cremation are exempt from entry requirements.
Penalties, fines and fees
Update penalty levels - new and maximum penalty rates There are changes to penalties for 26 of the offences outlined in the Act. Most of the changes are an increase in the maximum fine that applies. Some changes introduce different penalties for an individual and a body corporate.
Limitation period for offences The time a charge can be laid for an offence under the Act has been clarified, and has been reduced to four years from the time the offence was committed. However, for 21 specified offences under the Act, the limitation period is now consistent with the Criminal Procedure Act 2011 and ranges from six months for lesser offences to no limitation for more serious offending.
Electronic notices The Act clarifies that electronic notices, issued as a lawful instrument, can be sent electronically, such as to registered JBMS users.
Information management
Information sharing The new Act contains a range of enhanced provisions to better facilitate information sharing with external parties, while ensuring there is transparency and accountability regarding the collection, use and disclosure of information that Customs holds.