On the back of the commencement of the 2018-19 Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) risk season, Department of Agriculture & Water Resources (DAWR – formally Australian Quarantine) have advised that they are experiencing document processing delays.
The Department has re-iterated the following and the ACA Customs Team is working vigorously within the guidelines set to ensure that no cargo is delayed;
- Volumes are up 30% on this time last year.
- Early lodgment is recommended
- The use of the AEP system is encouraged to get traffic out of COLS (Cargo Online Lodgment System)
- All non-essential tasks within the Department are on hold to allow more officers to front line duties
- Overseas treatments are paramount to assist in easing the problem
- Overtime, additional resources including retired officers returning are all work in progress to provide additional resources
- The Departments ability to accurately manage and monitor processing times is under review. It appears that currently the data provided is inaccurate due to re-assessments and priority queuing
- IT System enhancements are currently underway to improve efficiencies
It is worth noting that the usage of the Automatic Entry Processing (AEP) system for BMSB subject consignments has been of great benefit to industry in enabling faster clearance of BMSB subject cargo. The ACA Customs Team will make use of the AEP system where available to ensure clearances are completed in the most efficient manner. LCL cargo is not available to be cleared via AEP.
AEP processing allows the lodging Customs Broker at ACA to assess the BMSB documentation provided and make the call at time of entry lodgment as to whether it is acceptable for clearance. Without the use of AEP, manual lodgment of documentation through COLS is necessary and can take several days to be processed.
If you have any questions regarding the current BMSB season, please contact your ACA Customer Service Representative.