ICES: Filing of Bills of Entry (BE) to be temporarily unavailable on Feb 1 following Budget announcement

Ahead of the Union Budget 2024-25 presentation on February 1, 2024, the Directorate General of Systems has issued a notification outlining the post-budgetary changes to be implemented in the ICES. The Directorate General of Systems, based in New Delhi, will spearhead the task of updating Notifications and Tariff Directories in ICES. This process will be executed by designated budget officers at Directory Management sites under the strict supervision of the Directorate General of Systems.

As a consequence of this exercise, filing of Bills of Entry (BE) will be temporarily unavailable starting from 11:00 hours on February 1, 2024, until the completion of the updates in ICES. Additionally, Section 48 approvals will be halted after the aforementioned time. However, it’s worth noting that all other services at ICEGATE will continue unaffected, and the system will remain accessible to officers for other functions within ICES.

While Shipping Bill (SB) filing and assessment will proceed as usual, anticipating changes in Export Duty, Export Cess, or other export-related levies, the notification advises relevant sites to monitor Let Export Order of the respective SBs issued after February 1, 2024. In the interim period until the online directory changes are implemented, any newly imposed export duty or cess should be manually collected.

For Bills of Entry filed before 11:00 hours on February 1, 2024, the processing will continue without disruption. However, field formations are urged to monitor Prior Bills of Entry filed on or before the specified date for any changes in duty liability before granting OOC.

The Directorate General of Systems anticipates that the system will be available for filing and processing of documents (BE) only after the necessary updates in ICES are completed following the Budgetary changes. Typically, this process takes approximately 48 hours, in collaboration with Directory Management sites and the National Informatics Centre (NIC), unless substantial new levies are introduced in the Budget.

Importers, Customs Brokers, and members of the trade are advised to plan the clearance of their Bills of Entry in accordance with the outlined timelines to mitigate any potential disruptions.

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