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Decree of the General Administration of Customs of the PRC No.165

2017-07-05 21:45:50

[No.165] Decree of the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China No.165

Source from GACC

 

Measures of the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China on Disclosure of Customs Information, which were adopted at the Executive Meeting of the General Administration of Customs on August 29, 2007, are hereby promulgated and shall be effective as of May 1, 2008. Measures of the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China on Disclosure of Customs Information promulgated in the form of Decree No.137 of the General Administration of Customs on December 27, 2005 shall be repealed simultaneously.

 

Mu Xinsheng

Minister

General Administration of Customs

September 5, 2007

 

 

Measures of the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China on Disclosure of Customs Information

 

(Adopted at the Executive Meeting of the General Administration of Customs on August 29, 2007, promulgated by Decree No.165 of the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China on September 5, 2007, and effective as of May 1, 2008)

 

Article 1 These Measures are formulated in accordance with the Customs Law of the People’s Republic of China, the Regulations of the People’s Republic of China on the Disclosure of Government Information and other related laws and administrative regulations for the purposes of safeguarding the right to know, right to participate and right to supervise on the part of citizens, legal persons and other organizations, enhancing the transparency of Customs work, boosting law-based administration and bringing into full play the role of Customs information in promoting production, people’s livelihood and economic and social activities.

 

Article 2 The term “disclosure of Customs information" in these Measures refers to the act or measure in which Customs, in the course of discharging its responsibilities, makes public the content(s) and procedures of matters bearing on the rights and obligations of citizens, legal persons and other organizations and other information that is subject to disclosure or may be disclosed according to law, and puts itself under supervision.

 

The term "Customs information" in these Measures refers to the information generated or acquired by Customs, in the course of discharging its responsibilities, and recorded and stored in a given form.

 

Article 3 The disclosure of Customs information shall be conducted pursuant to the principles of impartiality, fairness, objectiveness and providing convenience to the people.

 

Article 4 Customs shall disclose its information promptly and accurately. When detecting false or incomplete information which affects or has the potential to affect social stability or disturbs social management, Customs shall release, within its scope of responsibility, accurate information to clarify the situation.

 

Article 5 Disclosure of Customs information shall be carried out by the General Administration of Customs (GAC), regional Customs, Customhouses under the regional Customs and the various posted Customs agencies in accordance with relevant laws, administrative regulations and these Measures.

 

Article 6 Customs shall strengthen the organization of and provide guidance in relation to the disclosure of Customs information.

The General Office of the GAC shall be the competent authority in charge of the disclosure of Customs information nationwide, responsible for promoting, steering, coordinating and supervising the disclosure of Customs information across the country. The administrative offices or units undertaking the functions of administrative offices of regional Customs, Customhouses and posted Customs agencies shall be the competent authorities in charge of the disclosure of Customs information locally, responsible for promoting, steering, coordinating and supervising the disclosure of Customs information within the jurisdictions of their respective Customs.

The specific functions of the competent authorities of Customs information disclosure are as follows:

1) To organize the formulation of rules, bylaws and procedures governing the disclosure of Customs information, develop disclosure plans and programs, and determine the range, forms, procedures, etc., of the disclosure;

2) To organize and coordinate the disclosure of Customs information of the various functional units of their respective Customs;

3) To maintain and update the Customs information disclosed;

4) To process the applications to Customs for disclosure of Customs information;

5) To organize the compilation of the guidelines, catalogs and annual reports on disclosure of Customs information;

6) To examine whether the Customs information planned to be disclosed contains any classified information;

7) To perform other functions related to the disclosure of Customs information.

Other functional units of Customs shall take the initiative to disclose their respective information that should be released to the public, and actively assist the competent authorities of Customs information disclosure in their work.

 

Article 7 Customs shall enhance the supervision over and checks of the disclosure of Customs information.

The Bureau of Supervision posted by the Ministry of Supervision in GAC shall be the supervising department of national Customs information disclosure, responsible for supervising and checking the Customs information disclosure nationwide.

Disciplinary inspection units in regional Customs, Customhouses and posted Customs agencies shall be responsible for supervising and checking Customs information disclosure within the jurisdictions of their respective Customs.

 

Article 8 Customs shall establish and improve the mechanism of coordination for the disclosure of Customs information. When the Customs information released by Customs involves other administrative agencies, Customs shall communicate with them and confirm the information so as to ensure the accuracy of the information.

Where the Customs information to be disclosed by Customs is required by the relevant national provisions to get approval first, the information shall not be publicized without being granted approval.

 

Article 9 Customs shall take the initiative to publicize the following Customs information:

1) Customs rules and other regulatory documents enacted by Customs in the form of Announcement of GAC or Announcement of Regional Customs;

2) Matters subject to administrative licensing and their legal basis, conditions, quantities, procedures, deadlines and catalogues of all the materials that need to be submitted when applying for the Customs administrative licensing, and the handling thereof;

3) The legal basis, procedures, time limits and remedies of specific administrative actions conducted by Customs;

4) Organizational structure, terms of reference, office locations, office hours and telephone numbers of Customs;

5) Names, titles, responsibilities, employee numbers and office telephone numbers of Customs personnel working at the operational sites.

6) General Customs statistical data on import and export goods;

7) Catalogs, standards and implementation of Customs centralized procurement items;

8) Items subject to administrative fee-charging by Customs and the legal basis and standards thereof;

9) Professional discipline, work discipline and code of conduct of Customs;

10) Information on other matters that bear on the immediate interests of citizens, legal persons or other organizations, call for wide access and participation by the general public, or are subject to disclosure on Customs’ own initiative according to the relevant laws, administrative regulations and GAC provisions.

For the decisions and rules to be made by Customs or the plans, schemes and programs to be developed by Customs, if they involve the vital interests of citizens, legal persons or other organizations, or have significant social influence, Customs shall make public the draft and fully consider the opinions from the public.

 

Article 10 Customs information subject to disclosure on Customs’ own initiative shall be disclosed within 20 business days as of the day when the information is generated or changed. If the relevant laws or administrative regulations have different provisions on the time limit for disclosing Customs information, those provisions shall be followed.

 

Article 11 In addition to Customs information subject to disclosure by Customs on its own initiative provided for in Article 9, citizens, legal persons or other organizations may, based on their own special needs, such as those related to production, livelihood and scientific research, apply to Customs for relevant Customs information.

 

Article 12 Under any of the following circumstances, the customs information shall not be disclosed to the public:

1) The information involves State secret(s) or its disclosure will pose a threat to national security, public security, economic security and social stability;

2) The information involves commercial secret(s) or its disclosure might result in commercial secret leakage;

3) The information involves personal privacy or its disclosure might result in improper infringement upon personal privacy;

4) The information involves Customs secret(s);

5)The disclosure of the information might jeopardize public interests or the legitimate rights and interests of citizens, legal persons and other organizations;

6)Other information that shall not be publicized in accordance with the relevant laws, administrative regulations and rules of GAC.

Customs information involving commercial secret(s) or personal privacy may be disclosed by Customs provided that it is with the consent of the right holder(s).

 

Article 13 Customs shall establish and improve mechanism(s) of examination for confidentiality of the Customs information to be released, and clearly define the examination procedures and responsibilities.

Prior to disclosing the information to the public, Customs shall examine the information to be disclosed in accordance with the provisions of the Law of the People’s Republic of China on Guarding State Secrets and other laws, administrative regulations and relevant national provisions.

When Customs is unable to determine if certain Customs information may be disclosed, it shall submit the matter for determination to the competent authorities or authorities at the same level that is in charge of safeguarding confidentiality in accordance with laws, administrative regulations and relevant national provisions.

 

Article 14 Customs information to be disclosed on Customs’ own initiative shall be disclosed by means of Customs portal websites, press conferences, newspapers and other publications, radio, television and other methods that make it convenient for the public to be informed.

The Customs rules released in the form of Decree of GAC or other regulatory documents released in the form of Announcement of GAC shall also be carried on the “Gazette of the GAC of the People’s Republic of China”.

Customs may set up, as needed, Customs information disclosure handouts desks, information bulletin boards and electronic information screens in Customs operational sites to disclose Customs information.

 

Article 15 Information generated by Customs shall be disclosed by the Customs where the information has generated. Information acquired by Customs from citizens, legal persons or other organizations shall be disclosed by the Customs that stores the information. If laws or administrative regulations have different provisions on the scope of authorization to disclose Customs information, those provisions shall be followed.

 

Article 16 Customs shall compile and publish Customs information disclosure guidelines (or manuals) and catalogues, and update them in a timely manner.

Customs information disclosure guidelines shall include, inter alia, such contents as the types of Customs information, the system of cataloguing, the methods for obtaining the information, and the name, office address, office hours, telephone number, fax number and e-mail address of the competent authorities in charge of Customs information disclosure.

Customs information disclosure catalogues should include, inter alia, such contents as an index, the name of the information, a summary of the information contents and the date of generation of the information.

 

Article 17 Citizens, legal persons or other organizations that apply to Customs for information in accordance with Article 11 of these Measures, shall lodge the application to Customs in writing (including in the form of data messages), and fill out the Application Form of Customs Information Disclosure (see attachment). In the event that it is indeed difficult for the applicant to submit the information request in written form, the applicant may do so orally and the Customs processing the request shall fill out the Application Form of Customs Information Disclosure on the applicant’s behalf, which shall be signed by the applicant for confirmation.

 

Article 18 Customs shall reply to requests for Customs information disclosure in light of the specific circumstances:

1) If the requested Customs information falls within the scope of disclosure, Customs shall inform the applicant of the methods and channels for obtaining that Customs information;

2) If the requested Customs information does not fall into the scope of disclosure, Customs shall inform the applicant of the situation and make explanations;

3) Where, in accordance with relevant laws and regulations, the Customs information are to be disclosed by another agency, or the requested Customs information does not exist, the applicant shall be informed of the situation and, if the agency responsible for the disclosure of that information can be determined, the applicant shall be informed of the name and contact details of that administrative agency;

4) If the content of the requested Customs information is not clear, Customs shall inform the applicant and ask the applicant to make modifications or supply additional information.

If the requested Customs information contains some content(s) that should not be disclosed but the information can be handled through differentiation, Customs should provide the applicant with the information content(s) allowed to be disclosed.

 

Article 19 Where Customs believes that the requested Customs information involves commercial secret(s) or personal privacy, the disclosure of which might infringe upon the legitimate rights and interests of a third party, it shall ask the opinions of that third party in writing. If that third party does not agree to have the information disclosed, the information shall not be disclosed. However, where Customs believes that non-disclosure might greatly jeopardize public interests, it shall disclose the information and notify that third party in writing of the content(s) of the Customs information it has decided to disclose and the reasons thereof.

 

Article 20 Where an on-the-spot reply is possible, Customs shall reply to the requests for Customs information disclosure on the spot.

Where an on-the-spot reply is not possible, Customs shall provide a reply within 15 business days as of the date of receiving the request. If an extension of the time limit for replying to the request is needed, the approval of the responsible person(s) of the competent authorities in charge Customs information disclosure shall be obtained and the applicant notified. The maximum extension of the time limit for replying to a request shall be no more than 15 business days.

Where the requested Customs information involves the rights and interests of a third party, the time needed by Customs to seek the opinions of that third party shall not be counted against the time limit provided for in Paragraph 2 of this Article.

 

Article 21 Citizens, legal persons or other organizations applying to Customs for disclosure of Customs information concerning themselves shall present valid identification certificates or certifying documents.

Where citizens, legal persons or other organizations have evidence showing that the Customs information provided by a Customs concerning themselves is not recorded accurately, they are entitled to request the Customs to correct the information. If that Customs does not have the authority to make the correction(s), the case shall be transferred to the Customs or another administrative agency that does have such authority, and the applicant shall be so informed.

 

Article 22 When providing Customs information on request, Customs shall provide the information in the format requested by the applicant. Where it is impossible to provide the information in the format requested by the applicant, Customs may provide the information through making arrangements for the applicant to consult the relevant documents, providing photocopies or using other appropriate methods.

Where citizens requesting disclosure of Customs information have difficulties in reading or disabilities in hearing and seeing, Customs shall provide them with necessary assistance.

 

Article 23 When providing Customs information on request, Customs may charge cost-based fees for information retrieval, photocopying, postage and the like, and shall not charge any other fee(s). Customs shall not provide Customs information as a paid service through any other organization(s) or individuals.

The standards for fees charged by Customs to cover such costs as for retrieval, photocopying, postage and the like shall be made by the competent authorities of the State Council in charge of pricing in consultation with the competent authorities of the State Council in charge of financial affairs.

 

Article 24 Where the citizen who applies for Customs information disclosure does have economic difficulties, the related charges may be reduced or exempted on request from the applicant and on approval by the responsible person(s) of the competent authorities in charge of Customs information disclosure.

 

Article 25 Customs shall establish and improve the system of performance evaluation, social review and accountability for Customs information disclosure, and conduct the evaluation and review periodically.

 

Article 26 Customs shall release its annual report on Customs information disclosure of the previous year no later than March 31 each year.

Annual report on Customs information disclosure shall include the following particulars:

1) Information on disclosure of Customs information on Customs’ own initiative;

2) Information on disclosure of Customs information upon request and on requests denied;

3) Information on fee collection and fee reductions and exemptions concerning Customs information disclosure;

4) Information on applications for administrative review and filing of administrative lawsuits in relation to Customs information disclosure;

5) Major problems existing in Customs information disclosure and information on improvements thereof; and

6) Other items that need to be reported.

 

Article 27 Where citizens, legal persons or other organizations believe a Customs has failed to fulfill its obligations in respect of Customs information disclosure in accordance with law, they may report it to the disciplinary inspection unit posted in that Customs, the competent authority in charge of Customs information disclosure in that Customs or to the Customs at a higher level. The Customs or agency that receives the report shall investigate and address the issue.

Where citizens, legal persons or other organizations believe a specific administrative action of Customs in its information disclosure has infringed their legitimate rights and interests, they may, in accordance with law, apply for administrative review or lodge an administrative lawsuit.

 

Article 28 Customs and its personnel that violate these Measures, under any of the following circumstances, shall be ordered by the disciplinary inspection unit posted in that Customs or the Customs at a higher level to make corrections; In serious cases, the person in charge which bears direct responsibilities and other persons directly responsible shall be held accountable and punished; If the circumstances of the case are serious enough to constitute a crime, criminal liabilities shall be ascertained in accordance with law.

1) Failure to fulfill Customs information disclosure obligations in accordance with law;

2) Failure to timely update the contents of disclosed Customs information, the Customs information disclosure guidelines and catalogues;

3) Charging fees in violation of administrative regulations and rules;

4) Providing Customs information as a paid service through other organizations or individuals;

5) Disclosing Customs information which shall not be publicized;

6) Other actions that violate the provisions of these Measures.

 

Article 29 The anti-smuggling police units of Customs shall apply the relevant provisions on disclosure of police information. Cases not specified in the provisions on disclosure of police information shall be governed by these Measures.

 

Article30 These Measures shall be interpreted by the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China.

 

Article 31 These Measures shall enter into force as of May 1, 2008. The Measures of the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China on Disclosure of Customs Information promulgated in the form of Decree No.137 of the General Administration of Customs on December 27, 2005 shall be repealed simultaneously.

 

 

Attachment: Application Form of Customs Information Disclosure

 

 

 

(All information in this document is authentic in Chinese. English is provided for reference only. In case of any discrepancy, the Chinese version shall prevail. )