Payment of duties is required right after document verification and before physical inspection because (1) there are no penalties for any non-compliance in making the declaration, and (2) it would take longer to clear goods if errors are discovered during inspection, since the importer would have to pay duties again, hence encouraging compliance. (JBIC 2004) Payments of duties are made to Customs Offices or at banks prior to the examination of the goods. Duties can be paid either by cash or certified check.
There is no minimum value or amount of duties below which duties will not be collected, if the imports are for commercial purposes. Personal imports are duty-exempt.
Where the importer requests clearance of goods subject to a dispute or specific circumstance, such goods can be released either by: (1) paying the maximum rate of duty and reserving the right to settle the dispute at a later time; or (2) paying the amount of duty declared together with an additional amount covering the maximum payable duty as a deposit.
If there is evidence of errors in duty calculation, importers may claim refund by submitting a written request to the GDCE Director. The decision to refund duties is made by the MEF.