Review of regulations and incentives concerning foreign firms in Côte d’Ivoire

 

To better facilitate the clearance of imported goods to Côte d’Ivoire, the government has created the Foreign Trade Single Window (Guichet Unique du Commerce Extérieur, GUCE). The regime regroups all of the Customs clearing processes of stakeholders in good standing. The clearing process of imported goods is grounded in the following legal dispositions:

• UEMOA Regulation No. 05 of 1999/CM on the Customs value of imported goods;

• Decree No. 1993-313 on the conditions of entry into Côte d’Ivoire for goods of all origins and sources;

• Order No. 0340 of 2001 regarding cargo tracking slips;

• The concession agreement between the state and the Webb Fontaine Group relating to valuation;

• Order No. 281 of 2013 on formal Customs procedures prior to the import of goods;

• Interministerial Order No. 127 of 2014 relating to the declaration of import form; and

• Various circulars and information notes from the General Directorate of Customs (Direction Générale des Douanes, DGD) concerning the Customs clearance procedure of goods. In practice, however, the valuation of imported goods under the GUCE has proved a source of disagreement between importers and Customs officials. In light of these difficulties, the DGD took technical measures consisting of the use of additional codes to allow importers to prove their declarations, before justifying them a second time to the Value Arbitration Committee. This new procedure facilitates a speedier Customs clearance procedure. To better understand the action of the committee, it is necessary to refer to the valuation methodology as adapted by the provision of UEMOA Regulation No. 05 of 1999/CM.

Determining Customs Value

The Customs valuation of imported goods serves as the basis for the calculation of all taxes and duties to be collected and used as a source of state budget funds. The agreement OBG would like to thank EY for its contribution to THE REPORT Côte d’Ivoire 2019 specifies that the valuation of imported goods must be carried out in accordance with a hierarchy of methods.

The main method employed by officials involves using the transaction value, which refers to the price actually paid or is payable for the goods when they are sold for export to the country of import. The use of so-called “secondary” substitution methods is possible when the transaction value cannot be determined or if a buyer and seller are linked in such a way as to influence the price of the goods.

Value Arbitration Committee

As part of the procedures before the declaration is lifted, the Customs administration takes all the necessary measures to guarantee the recovery of the difference between duties and taxes liable to the value of goods in the event the value calculated is challenged. The principal Customs receiver is required to provide a bond of duties and taxes liable that are susceptible to compromise. Once the declaration with the OC3 code has been validated, the user has a total of five working days to file their dispute to the Value Arbitration Committee.

Information Note No. 105 of 2015 relating to the reorganisation of the Value Arbitration Committee and Information Note No. 372 relating to the treatment of value disputes both specify that a dispute must filed with the Committee’s secretariat within a period of 12 days from the date of use of the OC3 code or the formulation of the certified report.

After reviewing the file, the committee issues an verdict on the file’s content. If they issue the user with a favourable opinion, the dispute is expunged, and a cheque guarantee is returned to them.

On the contrary, if the committee confirms the valuation of said goods, the Customs officials tend to treat the challenge of value as an offence in accordance with the provisions stipulated in the Customs Code.

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The Report: Côte d’Ivoire 2019

Tax chapter from The Report: Côte d’Ivoire 2019

Cover of The Report: Cote d'Ivoire 2019

The Report

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