Senate concurs ratification of Convention on Temporary Admission

Senate concurs ratification of Convention on Temporary Admission

By Ernie Reyes

MANILA — The Senate today adopted a resolution concurring in the
ratification of the Convention on Temporary Admission subject to
certain reservations allowed under the treaty.

Sen. Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III, chairman of the Committee on
Foreign Affairs, said Senate Resolution 832 or the Convention on
Temporary Admission and its various Annexes constitute the
international codification of the ATA Carnet system, a combination of
French and English acronym which mean “admission temporaire” or
temporary admission.

According to Pimentel, the ATA Carnet system replaces the national
customs formalities with a system that facilitates the temporary
admission and tax-free and duty-free importation of commercial
samples, professional equipment, and articles for presentation or use
in trade fairs, shows, and exhibitions.

The treaty obligates contracting parties to provide temporary
admission of goods with total conditional relief from import duties
and taxes. It also requires simplified processes for temporary
admission of goods into a customs territory.

Pimentel explained how the treaty works by giving three scenarios: In
the first scenario, he cited the holding of trade exhibits throughout
Asia after the Covid-19 pandemic, where participants would bring their
products, including high- value scientific equipment, for
demonstration from country to country; in the second scenario.

Pimentel cited as an example, competing Filipino athletes such as EJ
Obiena, the Asian and Philippine record holder in pole vault, carrying
assorted equipment from country to country; and in the third scenario,
he cited various equipment such as laptops, cameras, tripod stands
that media personalities carry for their coverage in various political
hotspots.

“In a world without the ATA Carnet system, all the persons in these
scenarios would have to undergo customs formalities and pay expensive
import and re-export charges in every single country, making their
endeavor administratively taxing and financially expensive,” Pimentel
explained.

“This impedes their work and hampers the exchange of knowledge,
sharing of culture, participation in events, and building of
people-to-people links that are the foundation of global commerce and
solidarity,” he added.

He said under the ATA Carnet system, which is sometimes referred to as
the “passport of goods,” duties and taxes that may come due are
guaranteed merely by the presentation of the ATA Carnet and its
acceptance by the customs office of each territory of contracting
parties. Entry will be duty free unless the goods temporarily admitted
are not thereafter brought out of the country, in which case they are
liable for charges as imported goods.

Pimentel said the treaty would be advantageous to the Philippines
because it would increase the efficiency and productivity of customs.
With the codified ATA Carnet system, he said, the Bureau of Customs
(BOC) would no longer need to use valuable time and resources
processing temporary admission of scientific, professional and other
goods and equipment.

He said BOC would only need to rely on and monitor the ATA Carnets,
which would also guarantee the full payment of applicable duties and
taxes should the temporarily admitted goods fail to be totally
re-exported.

According to Pimentel, the treaty will also have both direct and
indirect benefits to the economy.

As a direct economic benefit, he said, Filipino entrepreneurs and
companies would find it easier and cheaper to join trade shows and
exhibits to showcase their products in the territories of other
contracting States. Companies and organizations of other contracting
States would also be encouraged to hold their exhibits and conventions
in the Philippines, thereby boosting other industries in the country
such as hotels, airlines, service sectors, SMEs, and MSMEs.

Lastly, Pimentel said the Philippines, as a party to the treaty, would
join its fellow Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) that
are already participants in the ATA Carnet system.

“This would further facilitate the realization of regional integration
and economic cooperation, consistent with the ASEAN Community Vision
2025, in which the Heads of State envision… ASEAN as an
outward-looking region within a global community of nations, while
maintaining ASEAN centrality with vibrant, sustainable, and highly
integrated economies,” Pimentel said.

“It is timely and it is necessary, for it will redound to the benefit
of our entrepreneurs, our service providers, the events sector, and
our economy as a whole, especially as our nation recovers from the
pandemic and our people expand the horizons of opportunity once
again,” he added. (ai/mtvn)

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