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What is a Pre-Arrival Import Declaration?

  • By Siacomex
  • 10 April, 2024

What is a Pre-Arrival Import Declaration?

A pre-arrival import declaration is a type of declaration submitted before the arrival of the transportation means at the national customs territory. This method helps expedite the import process and reduce waiting times at customs.

Obligations According to Decree 659 of 2024

Decree 659 of 2024 mandates the submission of pre-arrival declarations for all goods to improve efficiency and control in the customs process. Currently, the goods that require pre-arrival declarations include:

  1. Textile Materials, Their Manufactures, and Footwear:
    • All textile materials, manufactured textile products, and footwear must submit a pre-arrival declaration. This allows for prior review and stricter control of these goods.
  2. Yellow Machinery:
    • Machinery used in construction and mining is also subject to this requirement. The pre-arrival declaration facilitates the inspection and approval of this equipment before arrival.
  3. Mercury (Subheading
    • Due to the sensitive and regulated nature of mercury, a pre-arrival declaration is required for its import. This ensures compliance with all environmental and safety regulations.
  4. Certain Headings from Chapters 72, 73, and 76:
    • These chapters include iron and steel products (Chapter 72), cast iron, iron, and steel products (Chapter 73), and aluminum and its manufactures (Chapter 76). Pre-arrival declarations for these headings allow for better control of these essential materials for various industries.
  5. Certain Goods from Venezuela:
    • Goods from Venezuela, due to their particular context, require a pre-arrival declaration to ensure proper control and prevent smuggling and other irregularities.
  6. Goods for the Special Regime of Maicao:
    • Goods destined for the special regime of Maicao, a special trade zone in Colombia, must also submit pre-arrival declarations to ensure the correct application of the specific regulations for this region.

Benefits of Pre-Arrival Declarations

  1. Streamlined Customs Process:
    • Allows customs authorities to review and process documentation before the goods arrive, reducing waiting times at customs.
  2. Improved Control and Security:
    • Facilitates the identification of potential risks and the implementation of control measures before the goods enter the country, enhancing security and regulatory compliance.
  3. Operational Efficiency:
    • Helps companies better plan their logistics operations, reducing costs and improving the efficiency of goods transportation.

Decree 659 of 2024 emphasizes the importance of pre-arrival declarations for certain types of goods, promoting safer and more efficient foreign trade. This obligation will take effect once the customs authority announces the implementation of the new IT system and the development of this requirement in the regulations. Companies must adapt to these requirements to ensure compliance and benefit from a more streamlined customs process.

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