The Fiji Procurement Office is responsible for the customs clearance for all of government‟s consignments or indents via air or sea. Fiji Procurement Office (FPO) Logistics Unit has an essential duty of clearing the right items, which can include dry cargoes, cooler cargoes and dangerous goods, at the right time at the right place.
For all overseas procurement, the Logistics Unit of the FPO needs to be notified through Head of Procurement and provided with the original documents as soon as possible before the actual consignment arrives.
Original mandatory shipping documents consist of:
- Commercial Invoice
- Bill of Lading / Airway Bill
- Packing List
- Import permit/Licence
- Phyto certificate (if applicable) - BAF Certificate
- Waiver of duty approval from FRCS (if applicable)
Clearance of Indented Items
The FPO Logistics Unit receives the information from local shipping agents, suppliers or agencies to clear the goods. A request has to be forwarded to the Head of Procurement only if urgent clearance needs to be done after working hours and if goods have to be delivered beyond 10km of any of the clearance port.
Clearance of Non-Indented Items
A request for clearance of goods must be forwarded by the Heads of Department of the requesting agency to The Head of Fiji Procurement Office. Appropriate shipment documents must accompany the request.
The FPO is the broker acting on behalf of government agencies. In any case government agencies (consignee) will always contact FPO (customs broker) to clear shipments and provide FPO with the documentation requested by customs. After documentation is submitted, necessary payments are made and the shipment/documentation is inspected, the shipment is cleared and released to the consignee.
Things to watch out for:
- Extra costs that are spent by Government on unnecessary delays through human errors and laxity.
- All individuals involved with the procurement, receiving and clearance of the product should ensure that all processes are completed within time so that no further detention or demurrage charges can be incurred.
- Communicate with FPO early to avoid dissapointments
Clearance of Relief Supplies
Efficient clearance of relief supplies during and after natural disasters is of paramount importance to the FPO Logistics Unit as well as the National Disaster Management Office (NDMO).
Either the NDMO, Foreign affairs or International Cooperation Division of Ministry of Economy must liaise with donors and advise that consignments must be consigned to Prime Ministers Relief and Rehabilitation Fund, and arrange for documentation such as:
(i) Import permits; and
All correspondence must first be sent to the NDMO for their endorsement and approval before it is forwarded to the Fiji Procurement Office with the allocation number for which clearance will be charged.
Clearance of Dangerous Goods
Dangerous goods as substances which are either solids, liquids, or gases that can harm people, other living organisms, property, or the environment. They are often subject to regulations.
In addition to the mandatory shipping documents stipulated above the following must also be submitted to the Fiji Procurement Office Logistics Unit for clearance of dangerous goods.
Import License from the relevant issuing authority
- Dangerous Drugs - Seeds
Transportation of dangerous goods must be taken care of by the consigned Ministry and Department and must be in line with the regulations of the State, in regards to transportation of dangerous goods and substances.