Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Friday, October 20, 2006

P10-M worth of US-bound garments from China seized

By Leila Salaverria -- Inquirer

THE BUREAU of Customs has seized 10 million pesos worth of garments from China that were bound for the United States but falsely labeled “Made in the Philippines,” in violation of the Tariff and Customs Code.

This is a modus operandi, participated in by unscrupulous traders from both China and the Philippines, that aims to skirt quota restrictions on China-made textiles and garments, while taking advantage of the no quota privilege of apparel suppliers from the Philippines.

Spot checks of the apparel shipment from China, which arrived at the Port of Subic on October 9 aboard the Fesco Trader, revealed men’s shirts and other garments that were made to appear as products of the Philippines, the BOC said. The shipment was consigned to a certain Limech Garment Manufacturing Corp. and was reportedly intended for shipment to the United States.

The shipment examination was witnessed by representatives of the Department of Trade and Industry and the US Customs and Border Protection group.

Customs Commissioner Napoleon Morales said the stepped-up vigilance against mislabeled Chinese garment shipments was in line with a recently signed memorandum of understanding between the Philippines and the United States which aims to curtail the use of Philippine ports as a transshipment point for China-made garments.

Deputy Commissioner Reynaldo Nicolas, who heads the bureau’s Assessment and Operations Coordination Group, issued an alert order against the shipment for violating the Tariff and Customs Code of the Philippines. He said the bureau’s legal office would conduct further investigations on the shipment in preparation for the filing of smuggling charges against those responsible for it.


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