Article 158 of the CEMAC Customs Code states that: Imported or exported goods may only be accounted for by their owners or by natural or legal persons who are licensed.
Member states may, if necessary, limit this right to authorized customs agents only.
Also, article 1 of the regulation n°11/10-UEAC-207-CM-21 of October 28, 2010, specifies that: are considered as authorized customs agents, all natural or legal persons having the profession of accomplishing for others the customs formalities concerning the accounting of goods, whether this profession is exercised on a principal basis or constitutes the normal complement of the principal activity.
Therefore, it is necessary to see:
- The persons eligible for the said application
- The elements of the said application
- The circuit of the said application procedure
1) Eligible persons (art.148 to 151 of the CEMAC customs code)
- Persons who declare for themselves or for others:
- Owners of the goods:
- Natural persons
- Legal entities: it can be the representative (the declarant) see art.2 of the CEMAC regulation n°11/10
- The manager, the limited partner or the general partner in the case of a SUARL (partnership)
- The CEO or the managing director in the case of a S.A. (limited company)
- Persons filing on their own behalf :
- Public administrations
- Diplomatic missions
- International organizations
2) The elements of the application file.
According to article 9 of the CEMAC Regulation n°11/10 :
Those who wish to make a profession of accomplishing for others the customs formalities must make the request, by registered mail, to the address of the President of the Consultative Committee of the approved customs agents of the State where they wish to exercise the profession.
This request, in duplicate, established on stamped paper, must indicate the customs office or offices where the profession of customs agent would be exercised, mention all useful information on the expected traffic and be accompanied by the following documents
For natural persons :
- Extract from the birth certificate ;
- Valid extract from the criminal record;
- Certificate attesting to the exercise of the profession for at least 5 years in the field of transit, clearance of goods or international trade or certificate signed by the DG of Customs justifying a seniority of 20 years for the former customs executives;
- Certified copy of the license or equivalent diploma of higher education (transit, customs or international trade);
- Certificate of deposit of a bank guarantee of 25 000 000 FCFA (art.6 CEMAC Regulation n°11/10);
- Certificate of registration in the trade register and the role of patents (see ANPI file);
Declaration of commitment to register with a national corporate group within 3 months (art.7 of the said Regulation).
For legal entities:
- A birth certificate of the manager;
- An extract of the manager's valid criminal record;
- Application for personal approval of the persons authorized to represent the company;
- Certificate attesting to the exercise of the profession of declarant for at least 5 years in the field of transit, clearance of goods or international trade or certificate signed by the DG of Customs justifying a seniority of 20 years for the former executives of customs;
- Amplification of the deliberation during which the manager(s) were appointed if they are not statutory;
- Copy of the newspaper of legal announcements;
- Copies of the statutes ;
- Certificate of registration in the trade register and in the register of patents (see ANPI file);
- Certificate of deposit of a bank guarantee of 25.000.000FCFA (art.6 CEMAC regulation n°11/10);
- Declaration of commitment to register with a national corporate group within 3 months (art.7 of the said Regulation);
3) Circuit of the request to the General Directorate of Customs and Indirect Rights (GDCIR)
- Demande adressée au Directeur Générale des Douanes et Droits Indirects qui fait office du président du Comité Consultatif des Commissionnaires en Douane agrées de l’État où la profession sera exercée.
- Dépôt au service Courrier avec accusé de réception et transmission au cabinet du DG
- Transmission à la Direction de la Législation, des Échanges et des Relations Internationales (DLERI).
- Avis de la DLERI (favorable ou non) au DG des Douanes
- Enfin, le DG des Douanes et Droits Indirects, Président du comité Consultatif National accuse réception de la demande d’agrément et saisit immédiatement le Comité appelé à donner son avis (art.11 du règlement CEMAC n°11/10)
- Le dossier complet ainsi qu’une ampliation du procès verbal de la réunion du Comité Consultatif National doivent être adressée sans délai au Président de la Commission de la CEMAC pour inscription de l’affaire à l’ordre du jour du prochain conseil de ministre de l’UEAC.
4) Request for a provisional authorization to practice to the DG of Customs
Article 150 of the CEMAC Customs Code authorizes any natural or legal person who, without being a customs agent, intends to make detailed declarations to customs on behalf of others in the course of his industry or trade, to obtain authorization to clear goods through customs.
This authorization is granted by the Director of Customs on a temporary and revocable basis and for specific operations under conditions determined by each State.