The Bureau of Customs is a Philippine government agency under the Department of Finance which is responsible for regulating and facilitating trade including the import and export of all seafood products. They can be contacted at: [email protected]
An application form for a proposed export shipment can be submitted at the Customs Department at the departing port. The procedures for the customs can take a few days but if you prepare well this can also be completed within a few hours. For these purposes it is important to have all the required documents in order and to hire a good agent to assist you with all procedures.
When exporting seafood products the following documents are required by the customs:
- Health Certificate (released by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources)*
- Catch certificates (released by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources)
- Export Commodity Clearance (released by the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources)
- Bill of Lading
- Packing List
- Receipt for Prepaid Income Tax
*The Philippines had started implementing the online Trade Control and Expert System (TRACES) system for the application of Health Certificates, which was developed by the EU. This system speeds up the approval and release of health certificates significantly and it also immediately forwards the approved documents to the veterinary health authorities in the receiving country.
If all requirements are met, the necessary BFAR documents are released within the same day of application.