The Finance ministry on Monday said the customs department is moving towards a paperless regime and doing away with the submission of certain documents physically by importers and exporters from December 1. The move would help importers and exporters move towards electronic messaging and paper-free environment and further enhance the 'Ease of Doing Business' by reducing or eliminating physical printouts for customs clearance, an official statement said. According to the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) circular, importers and exporters will henceforth not be required to submit paper documents such as GAR 7 forms/ TR 6 Challans, Trans-shipment Permit (TP), Shipping Bill (Exchange Control copy and Export Promotion copy) & Bill of Entry (Exchange Control Copy) to Banks/ DGFT / Customs Ports. The instructions are to be made operational from December 1, 2016, the statement added. As 95% of the importers are now paying duty through e-payment and these documents can be viewed on the ICEGATE e-payment Gateway, the need for the print out of GAR 7 Forms /TR6 Challans is not required, the ministry said. It said the CBEC provides copies of the digitally signed Shipping Bill to DGFT and also the data of Shipping Bill is integrated with the EDPMS (Export Data Processing and Monitoring System) of RBI.
Therefore, printing of the Exchange Control copy and Export Promotion copy of the Shipping Bill for manual submission by the exporter is not required. Similarly, with the operationalisation of the IDPMS (Import Data Processing and Monitoring System) banks are not required to obtain a physical copy of Bill of Entry from the importer as an evidence of import because data can be transferred in a secured manner from the system of Customs department to IDPMS. It has been, therefore, decided to discontinue the printing of Exchange control copy of Bill of Entry. All Customs Houses at Ports, Air Cargo Complex, ICDs and CFCs have been asked to issue Public Notice saying that importers and exporters would not be required to submit paper documents.