P4-M refrigerant chemicals sans environmental permit seized at MICP

Published October 9, 2019, 10:22 AM

by Dr. Eduardo Gonzales

By Betheena Kae Unite

A cargo container filled with refrigerant chemicals worth P4 million was intercepted at the Manila International Container Port due to the absence of necessary clearance from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), the Bureau of Customs said.

(Bureau of Customs PH official facebook page/ MANILA BULLETIN)
(Bureau of Customs PH official Facebook page/ MANILA BULLETIN)

The Customs–Environmental Protection and Compliance Division (EPCD) seized on Monday the 20-feet container of refrigerant chemical which arrived in the country on September 7, 2019, from China.

It was disclosed that the cargo contained 1,150 units of Koman Refrigerant chemicals worth P4 million. However, upon cross-checking of documents, it was discovered that the shipment was not covered with any clearance from the DENR-Environmental Management Bureau (DENR-EMB).

According to the bureau, it was consigned to Barcolair Philippines Inc. and was processed by customs broker Alex Talaboc Bayot.

Records from the DENR showed that the importer has neither renewed its registration as an importer nor secured a Pre-Shipment Importation Clearance (PSIC).

It was intercepted for violation of Section 117 in relation to Section 1113 of Republic Act (RA) No. 10863, the Customs Modernization and Tariff Act, as well as Customs Memorandum Order No. 9-2015 in relation to RA 6969 and EMB Memorandum Circular Order No. 2005-03.

The order requires all importers of chemicals that are alternatives to ozone-depleting substances to register with EMB and must secure a PSIC before the entry of such chemicals into the country.

It can be recalled that EPCD, a permanent and specialized unit tasked to monitor and control the entry of hazardous substances and other wastes into the country, was created in the bureau in August this year. It was established through Customs Memorandum Order No. 38-2019 issued on August 6, 2019.

The unit also has the power to issue alert orders against shipments suspected of containing goods in violation of the CMTA and environmental laws.