Thursday, 16 December 2021
Department of Finance
Customs and Excise
256. To ask the Minister for Finance if regulations will be introduced to regulate service providers that charge a fee for clearing parcels and packets including collection and payment of duties for the Revenue Commissioners; if regulation of these charges will be assigned to the Commission for Communications Regulation or to another statutory regulatory authority; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [62637/21]
I am advised by Revenue that across the European Union electronic customs import declarations are now required for all parcels / packages coming from non-EU countries regardless of the value of the goods being sent. This includes parcels / packages coming from the UK. It is important to note that without a customs declaration and payment of any taxes and duties owed, parcels / packages from outside the EU cannot be delivered to the importer.
The importer may submit the import declaration themselves or they can appoint a representative to submit the declaration on their behalf. Generally, private individual importers appoint a representative and the commercial arrangements that they have with this representative, including the fees levied by the representative for the service provided, is a matter between them and the service provider and Revenue has no role in relation to the fees charged. This is a contractual arrangement between the service provider and the importer. They have further advised that these representatives do not collect the relevant taxes and duties on behalf of Revenue, but rather they act on behalf of the importer and assist the importer in the completion of customs formalities required when importing goods from outside the EU, including in discharging their liability to any taxes and duties owed.
The regulation of fees charged by a commercial entity in terms of the commercial services provided to an importer in meeting their obligations to comply with their statutory obligations is not a matter for me as Minister for Finance or my Department. I have no proposal to introduce or assign any role in that regard to any regulatory authority.