Sierra Leone: customs and tax reforms herald tougher stance on trade-based financial crime

A senior official at Sierra Leone’s Customs Service Department (CSD) has warned importers and clearing agents against false declarations, mis-descriptions, under invoicing and incorrect currency declarations on their customs documentation.

Assistant commissioner Lizbal Heroe said the department would not spare anyone involved in these practices at the inaugural tax education workshop of the National Revenue Authority.

Documentary evidence

Measures to cut down on mis-descriptions and false classifications of goods include the launch of a new cargo inspection facility where custom officers and agents will examine shipments against documents.

The NRA is implementing reforms aimed at tightening poor existing customs declaration practices and forcing importers to declare and show genuine documents, including the original commercial invoice of the goods they are importing.

Valuation unit

Heroe said the department has also set up a Valuation Unit to improve the assessment and valuation of imported goods.

The unit uses a price reference database, so the values stated on original commercial invoices can be compared with market values listed on the database.

Categories: Trade Based Financial crimes News

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