Customs and Excise Bill passes First Reading

  • Nicky Wagner

Customs Minister Nicky Wagner has welcomed the First Reading of the Customs and Excise Bill in Parliament today.

“This is a Bill that is better for businesses. Not only will it be easier to use and understand, it makes businesses’ obligations clearer and provides more flexibility in meeting them,” Ms Wagner says.

“It will replace the out-dated 1996 Customs and Excise Act that is unable to respond to a changing border environment.”

“The Bill enables better risk assessment and management, more effective cross-agency collaboration and flexible responses to future trends,” Ms Wagner says.

“Border security will be balanced with individuals’ privacy by placing restrictions on Customs’ powers to examine electronic devices, and safeguards in information sharing arrangements that protect personal and commercially sensitive information.”

“Advance rulings, a new regime for provisional values, and the ability to appeal duty assessments direct to Customs will give importers greater certainty.

“New Zealanders will have greater assurance that border risk and non-compliance will be identified and dealt with,” Ms Wagner says.

The Bill has been referred to the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee.