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Trader Guide
 


Lebanese Republic
Ministry of Finance
Customs Administration
 
Customs Guide
Principles and Procedures of Customs Declarations
 
I. Introduction
 
The present Guide includes any and all required procedures for completing customs declarations under all customs statuses including import, export, suspending tariff cases, the clearance of goods, the payment of customs duties in connection therewith, the clearance of personal luggage, which is, either imported or exported, by passengers by sea, land or air.
 
The purpose of this Guide is to inform and introduce the Lebanese citizens, foreigners, traders and passengers of their rights and obligations towards the Customs Administration which, like any other governmental administration, was originally created for the purpose of providing services to the citizen and to secure to him the proper facilities that maintain, on one hand, his rights and preserve his dignity and guarantee at the same time the rights of the Treasury and the compliance with the laws and regulations governing the procedures of entry to and the exit of individuals and goods from the Lebanese territories.
 
However, it is noteworthy that this Guide is just a guide and does not include all the provisions, rules, terms and conditions in connection with the customs activity which are provided for in details in the Customs Act and the subsequent executive ordinances issued by the Higher Council of Customs or the Customs Administration that remain the main references.
 
II. General Principles
 
This section provides hereinafter for the general basic rules that govern the Customs work:
 
The required documents are as follows:
  1. Mandatory Declaration: Any natural person or moral entity which intends to import to or export from Lebanon, for any purpose whatsoever, any goods, items or things, of any type whatsoever, is under the obligation of declaring them before the competent customs office of import or export to the exception of any individuals or entities that are dispensed of such obligation by any legal provision. The Customs Administration shall specify the form and the elements of such declaration. Such declaration may be verbal declaration (Passengers).

  2. Verification of Declaration: The Customs officer shall admit the declaration and verify its validity in such cases and according to the tools (including the inspection of goods) and procedures provided for in the laws and regulations in force.

  3. Determination and Payment of Customs Duties: The Customs officer shall set the duties of the goods in compliance with Customs tariffs or the tariff provided for in any other laws and regulations. The duties are paid at the Customs' Treasury and the concerned party shall receive a regular receipt. The Customs officer shall not receive more or no less than the set customs duties. Any sum, which is not provided for by any laws or regulations in force or paid without any official receipt, is illegal. The parties that paid and received such sum are subject to the legal sanctions.

 
III. Declarations of Goods
 
1. Customs Statuses
Any ordinary trader, company or individual may import or export goods according to the laws and regulations in force and under any of the customs statuses specified hereinafter:

- Export:
  • Ordinary Export (EX1)
  • Temporary Export (EX2)
  • Re-export (EX3)
- Import:
  • Import for Local Consumption (IM4).
  • Re-import (IM6).
Suspension Tariffs Cases
  • Temporary Admission for manufacturing or completion of manufacturing and temporary import (IM5).
  • Admission to the public, private, industrial or specialized warehouses (IM7).
  • Ordinary Transit (TR8)
  • International transit (B9 and B10)

N.B: The international transit has not been included yet in the customs unified declaration.

 
 
2. Declaration by Customs Declaration
Any importer or exporter must declare the imported or exported goods. The goods are declared through a detailed customs declaration. As of the beginning of 1997, the Customs Administration has adopted a unified form for all customs declarations known as the "Single Customs Declaration". This form is used for all customs statuses. The code of the declaration or of the customs status under which the goods are processed is specified in Box 1 (Please refer to the codes of declarations or customs statuses provided for here above).

The cases set forth hereinafter are excluded from the obligation of filing the detailed declaration:
  • Cases whereby verbal declaration is authorized by the Customs Administration.
  • Goods which are excluded from such obligation pursuant to international treaties.
  • Mail packages and regular mail.
  • Any used personal luggage and any new personal items brought by Lebanese or foreign passengers to Lebanon in compliance with the terms and conditions as set forth by the Customs Administration.
  • Personal consignments ad commercial samples of insignificant value or quantity in compliance with the terms and conditions as specified by the Customs Administration.

The General Director of Customs may authorize simplified procedures for the purpose of clearing certain kind of goods provided that these procedures are completed at a later stage by filing the detailed declarations related thereto.

The direct delivery of the imported or exported good may be authorized in some cases after the registration of the declaration and prior to completing the required phases of customs clearance and the payment of customs duties in compliance with the terms and conditions as set forth by the General Director of Customs.

 
3. Authorized Customs Clearance Agents
The parties indicated hereinafter may submit goods to the Customs Administration either consumption or any other customs regime and to file any customs declarations in connection therewith:
  • Any person acting as a clearance agent or the licensed forward agents.
  • Traders and their authorized agents provided that they provide the required evidence of their ownership, custody or shipping rights of goods.
  • Non-trader individuals in the name of which, for whom or from whom, parcels of goods are exceptionally sent.

The party that is filing the customs declaration shall present to the Customs Administration the delivery order (or the delivery permission) relevant to the goods. Any delivery order transferred in the name of a forward agent is considered as a valid proxy that entitles the concerned forward agent to complete the customs procedures only. The forward agent is remunerated for his services. However, such remuneration is not set by the laws and regulations in force.

 
4. The Major Elements and Enclosures of the Customs Declaration
The required data of the customs declaration are specified in the standard form of declaration .In fact, the Customs Administration has published the " Guide of the Single Customs Declaration" which explains all aspects related to the form, fields and data of the declaration. The Guide is included in the " Officer's Guide" and is available at all customs offices and forward agents.

The major elements of the declaration are indicated hereinafter:
A. The Value
As of April 2001, the date of promulgation and enforcement of the new Customs Act 4461 dated 15 December 200, the customs value of World Trade Organization (WTO) known by the GATT has been implemented in Lebanon.

Accordingly, the value of the goods imported to Lebanon that should be declared is based on the value of transaction. It includes the price which is actually paid or payable for the goods when purchased for the purpose of being exported to Lebanon and any and all other subsequent expenses incurred by the buyer and they were not covered by the price (including but not limited to, shipment, insurance, unloading etc.) until the arrival of goods to Lebanon.

The customs value, provided that they are distinguished from the price actually paid or payable for the imported goods:

The customs value shall not include, in general, the charges or costs which are paid after the arrival of the goods to Lebanon provided that they are independent of the price which has been actually paid or payable for the imported goods including but not limited to, the cost of transport after arriving to Lebanon, storage, and the applicable duties and taxes in Lebanon.

The transaction value of the declared goods is evidenced by the original purchase invoice and any other documents in connection with the shipments and insurance costs and any other charges and expenses related to the goods. The invoice is admitted whether handwritten, typed, electronically printed or electronically transmitted or signed by hand or by e-signatures.
 
N.B: The legalization of the original invoices by the chambers of commerce or the Lebanese authorities abroad is not required.
 
Section II of Chapter V of the Customs Act (Articles 35 to 49) provides for all other values which are alternative to the transaction value if such value may not be specified according to article 35 of the Customs Act and in general all the details in connection with the procedures of assessment and the elements included in the value.

The declared value of the exported goods is the value of the goods at the time of registration of the declaration in addition to the cost of transport of such goods to the border. This value does not include neither the applicable export taxes and duties, if any, nor the local taxes and duties which are reimbursed when the goods are exported.

Any misrepresentations of value are subject to the sanctions provided for in article 421 or 425 of the Customs Act.
 
B. Country of Origin
The country of origin is the country where the merchandise is produced or the country where the merchandise is fully obtained. The country of origin may be different from the country of import or the country from which the goods have been shipped. For instance, if the merchandise was produced in Japan, purchased from a trader in Germany and shipped from France, the country of origin in this case would be Japan, and the country of import is Germany and the country of shipment (or last destination) is France.

Where two or more countries are involved in the production of a product, the origin of the product shall be the country in which the last substantial manufacturing or transformation process of economic value took place (criteria: change of classification of tariff of the goods- the percentage of the ad valorem- the significance of the manufacturing processes)

The origin of the goods is evidenced by the original invoice issued by the foreign seller and which expressly specifies in one way or another, the origin of goods or by submitting an independent certificate of origin provided that it contains the same data relevant to the goods including but not limited to, the type, number, weight, marks etc.

The purpose of evidencing the origin of the goods whenever they are declared is to:
  • Avail of the preferential tariff (total or partial exemption of customs duties) in application of bilateral or collective conventions signed by Lebanon and the other countries.
  • Organize the statistics of foreign trade.
  • Fight commercial fraud.
  • Implement the procedures related to public health and order.

Any foreign goods which are imported to Lebanon, are exempt from the obligation of proving the origin in some of the cases indicated hereinafter:

  • Personal mail consignments and packages sent by air.
  • Advertising material and samples of goods which have no commercial value or the commercial value is no more than LBP One Million.
  • Personal luggage of passengers of no more than LBP Five Million.
  • Any used furniture belonging to Lebanese or foreigners who wish to reside in Lebanon.
  • Transit goods.
 
Exported goods shall not be subject to proof of origin requirements. In case the country of importation requires such proof to determine preferential treatment eligibility, relevant Lebanese authorities shall issue the certificate of origin.

The exported goods shall benefit of preferential treatment only if certificate of origin issued by the relevant authorities in the country of origin is submitted and it includes the required indications for the identification of goods. The goods must also be imported directly from the country of origin into Lebanon and the request of reduction or exempt of customs duties is included within the customs declaration according to the appropriate codes.

In case of any suspicion in connection with the filed certificates of origin, the Customs Administration may require further complementary proofs of the validity of the origin.

Any dispute arising from or in connection with the validity of the origin of the goods shall be referred to a special committee of arbitration.

Any false declaration of the origin in order to avail of the reduction or exemption of customs duties is subject to the relevant penalties provided for in the Customs Act.
 
C. Type of Goods
The type of goods shall be the customs nomenclature of such goods as mentioned in the customs tariff table according to the Harmonized System.

The type of goods is declared by mentioning its nomenclature and identification number according to the customs tariff table of the Harmonized System adopted by Lebanon. The determination of the identification number of the goods, known as " the classification of goods" is rather difficult and requires a thorough knowledge of customs tariffs or the review of the " explanatory memos" or "the alphabetical Guide" of the Harmonized System. However, in some cases, the goods do not have a clear identification number or the goods may be classified under one or two numbers. In such cases, the Higher Council of Customs shall be the competent authority that decides the final classification of the goods.

The customs tariffs may be purchased from the General Directorate of Customs or they may be reviewed at the offices of the forward agents or the customs offices or at the website of the Lebanese customs at (www.customs.gov.lb).
 
5. Customs Duties:
 
A) Import
 
1. Customs Duty
On July 1995, all import customs duties were unified under one customs duty known as the " Single Customs Duty".

The calculation of the customs duties is based on the type of the duty. For instance, the proportional duty is computed on the basis of a proportion of the value of the goods (15% of the value) while the qualitative duty is calculated on the basis of a specific amount for each quantity unit such as the weight, number, size etc. (for instance: LBP five thousand per one net kilogram or 255 per liter etc.) there are other types of customs duties which are proportional with a qualitative minimum or vice versa ( for instance: 35% of the value of the goods and a minimum of LBP 510 per 1 net kg). In this case, the customs duty is calculated according to proportion and quantity unit and the highest duty is collected.
 
2. Local Consumption Duty
Since November 1998, the local consumption duty has been separated from the customs duty and it has been applicable to certain types of goods including, but not limited to, tobacco products, fuels, cars, cement, lime, plaster and alcohols.

This duty is applicable to imported products and locally produced products.
 
3. The Value Added Tax ( VAT)
As of 1st of February 2002, the value added tax has been implemented in Lebanon and it covers the majority of products which are included in the customs tariff. The value added tax represents 10% of the value. The taxable value of the imported goods is the value of the goods which is approved by the Customs in addition to the customs duty and any other due charges and fees of the imported goods.

The goods, which are subject to the value added tax upon import and their rates, are indicated by their identification numbers in the schedule of tariff of customs duties according to the Harmonized System.

N.B: The value added tax is applicable to imported products and locally produced products also.
 
4. Stamp Duty
In addition to the Single Customs Duty, the Local Consumption duty and value added tax, each declaration is subject to a lump sum of LBP Fifty Thousand which represents the value of the stamps that must be posted on the customs declaration and its enclosures notwithstanding the type or number of such enclosures. This duty is not applicable to export declarations.
 
5. Claims of Exemptions or Reductions
If the declaring party wishes to avail of any of the exemptions or reductions provided for in the laws and regulations in force or the trade treaties, he must include in the appropriate box of the declaration the special code in connection therewith.

The lists of products which may avail of exemptions or reductions according to commercial treaties are annexed to the customs tariff book.

As for the cases that benefit of exemptions or reductions for agricultural or industrial purposes or any other special purposes, they are included in the complementary notes of the explanations of the schedule of tariff of the Harmonized System which are also made part of the tariff book.

The cases that avail of exemptions or reductions of customs duties pursuant to the applicable laws and regulations in force, are listed per codes in the " Officer's Guide" by the Customs Administration.

All cases of exemptions and reductions may be reviewed at any customs office or on the Lebanese customs website.

N.B: In each clause of the declaration, the applicant may avail of one special treatment of exemption or reduction of the customs duty).
 
B) Export
 
The exported goods are not subject to any of the duties mentioned here above.
 
C) Customs Services Fees
 
1. Storage Fee
Any merchandises, which are stored within the vicinity of the Customs area or in the yards or warehouses managed directly by the Customs Administration for a period of more than five days, are subject to storage fee.

The storage fee implemented by the Customs Administration should cover the actual cost of storage activities.

After consulting the General Director of Customs, the Higher Council of Customs may license the operation of the customs warehouses which are directly managed by the Customs Administration for storage purposes to other entities in compliance with the procedures provided for in the laws and regulations in force.

Articles 321 to 327 of the Customs Act set forth any and all details in connection with the storage fee which is implemented in the warehouses of Beirut International Airport and all other customs offices, the exemptions of storage fee and any and all other regulations governing storage operation.
 
2. Overtimes
After consulting the General Director of Customs, the Higher Council of Customs shall set by decisions the remuneration of such services which are provided to the interested parties after the regular working hours or outside the work premises specified in the customs laws and regulations and the remuneration of the customs officers who are assigned to complete the customs declarations of the concerned parties at such places where the licensed forward agents are not available. The Higher Council shall set by decision the required procedures for the allocation of such sums.
 
3. Services Fees
 
After consulting the General Director of Customs, the Higher Council of Customs shall set by decisions the customs services fess which are provided by the customs officers for import, export, transit and inspection of the passengers' luggage. The Higher Council shall set by decision the required procedures for the allocation of such sums.
 
6. Enclosures of Customs Declaration
In order to admit the customs declaration, the enclosures indicated hereinafter are required:
  • The original invoices
  • The detailed itemized lists if the invoices do not include the required details.
  • Copy of the bill of lading or any other substitute document.
  • Certificate of origin according to the Customs Act and the bilateral or collective treaties signed by Lebanon.
  • Any other document required by the applicable laws and regulations (such as: the proof of payment, special statement of value elements etc.)

For more information on the other documents or procedures which are required by other administrations such as prohibition measures, licenses, permits, certificates and any other terms and conditions, such data are available in the guide entitled " Restrictions and Prohibitions- Circular 1" obtainable at all customs offices, the forward agents, and the customs website.

In the customs offices, which implement NAJIM system, the electronic customs declaration includes, according the draft declaration submitted by the declaring party, in the "enclosures" box, the codes of the required enclosures of the declaration and the codes of the other necessary procedures of the declaration. The list and explanation of such codes is included in the "Officers Guide" mentioned here above.

N.B: The same declaration may include merchandises, subject matter of various invoices and origins provided that the value stated therein is indicated in one currency and such merchandises are subject to the same terms and conditions of delivery (FOB, CIF etc.).

 
7. Customs Procedures
The clearance procedures very between the customs offices that implement the NAJIM System and the other customs offices that have not implemented the system yet.
 
A) Customs Offices not implementing NAJIM Automated System
From filing the declaration and until the payment of duties and the retrieval of goods, the procedure of customs clearance passes through the following phases:
  • Preparation, signature and attachment of the required enclosures to the declaration.
  • Presenting the declaration for admission
  • Registration of the declaration.
  • Payment of manifest
  • Payment of permits (if necessary)
  • Referral of the declaration to the Inspector.
  • Verification of declaration (Inspection).
  • Calculation of the declaration (determination of duties and any other due sums).
  • Signature of the Head Inspection officer (with the possibility of performing a counter-inspection).
  • Auditing of declaration by the audit officer.
  • Registration of duties in the daily register.
  • Issue of receipt.
  • Payment of duties.
  • Clearance of goods.

In addition to the procedures indicated here above, any other procedures required by the other ministries and competent authorities (including but not limited to, visas, permits etc.) must be completed as well as the other procedures followed by inspection such as categorization, analysis, legal expertise, breaches, fines, settlements, cautions undertakings etc.

 
B) Offices implementing NAJIM Automated System
The procedures of customs clearance through NAJIM Automated System are as follows:
  • A preparatory phase including:
  • Two actual phases (if the line is green), or
  • Three actual phases (if the line is red)
 
 
The Preparatory Phase: Prepare and enter or send and print
 
1. Users of NOOR System:
  • The user shall prepare the draft declaration directly on his PC.
  • He shall send it electronically to NAJIM Automated System where it will be audited, saved and returned to him with the saving number or reference number.
  • The user will print it, sign it and attach the required documents.
 
2. Non-Users of NOOR System:
  • The declaration is prepared on the official printed form ( A1, B1).
  • The declaration is logged in customs admission center and then printed and returned to the declaring party.
  • The declaration is checked by the declaring party, corrected if necessary and re-printed.
  • The declaration is signed by the declaring party and returned with the required enclosures.
 
Phase I: Admission
  • The declaration and its enclosures are filed with the admission officer that:
    • Retrieves the saved declaration on the screen according to the reference number.
    • Compares the printed declaration to the saved declaration.
    • Checks it and verifies the validity of its enclosures.
    • Performs any other audits (restrictions, prohibitions, Israel boycott etc.)
  • If the declaration is not accepted by the admission officer, the declaration shall be returned to the declaring party to perform the required corrections.

If the declaration is accepted:

  • The admission officer shall order its registration and evaluation and the system will:
    • register the declaration and gives it a number that will appear on the screen.
    • Select the line: green or red.
    • Select the inspector or the head of inspection (if the line is red).
  • Print the evaluation that includes the number of registration, the number of evaluation, the selected line, the name of the inspector and the head of inspection (in case of a red line).
  • Deliver to the declaring party the evaluation of the declaration.
The number of registration is punched on the declaration and its enclosures. The declaration is saved (green line) or send to the inspector (red line).
 
Phase II: Inspection

(N.B: The declaration is not processed through this phase unless the line is red):

•  The declaration and its enclosures are sent to the selected inspector through administrative line.

•  The declaring party submits the evaluated declaration to the inspector.

•  The inspection is performed in the presence of the declaring party. The inspector shall note the result of such inspection on A5 form attached and made part of the declaration.

•  If the inspector discovers any discrepancies, he shall log them into the system in order to modify the declaration, if such discrepancies represent a customs breach. Then the declaration is signed.

The Head of Inspection shall review the declaration and either approve it and sign it or reject it. He shall, at his sole discretion, perform a counter-inspection. A modified evaluation shall be printed or the first evaluation shall be modified.
 
Phase III : (Red Line) or second (Green Line): Payment .

•  The declaring party shall pay the required duties at the treasury according to the evaluation.

•  The treasurer shall receive the required duties and any other due sums (fines etc.), which are added manually to the evaluation. He shall print the receipt and the clearance permit, sign them and deliver them to the declaring party who shall present them with the delivery order once the goods are retrieved.

N.B.: the settlement of the manifest (or permits if any) is performed after the retrieval of goods.

 
New aspects of NAJIM Automated system :

In addition to the comprehensive electronic clearance of goods, the new feature of NAJIM Automated System is to reduce the number of clearance phases by canceling some of them (such as auditing of the declaration by the auditor during inspection) or but not including it in the clearance process (before or after) (such as the settlement of the manifest) or by merging several phases in one single phase (join the verifications of the admission officer or the daily operations, receipt and payment).

Moreover, NAJIM Automated Information System selects automatically , through the computer, the declarations intended for inspection according to various criteria and proportions set by the Customs Administration. Thus the declarations are directed to different lanes:

The red line : for the declarations which are not inspected and referred directly for payment after they have been accepted.

Red line: for declarations which are subject to inspection.

 

Principles, Rules and Procedures of Clearance :

•  Inspection in presence of the party that filed the declaration or his legal representative only.
In the cases where the inspection of goods is required, the Inspector or the Head of Inspection may only open and inspect the content of parcels in the presence of the party that filed the customs declaration (the proprietor of the goods or his authorized employee or the forward agent) who shall be solely responsible for any missing goods during the process of inspection.

•  Prohibition of referring the declaration from one employee to another by the declaring party after it has been accepted and registered by the Customs Administration .

The declarations are referred through administrative procedures. This rule has been applicable as of the beginning of the implementation of NAJIM System considering that the declaration becomes the property of the Administration once it has been accepted and registered.

•  Arbitration and Legal Expertise
In case of any dispute between the Customs Administration and any of he concerned parties arising from or in connection with the type, qualification, origin or value and the concerned parties refused the customs' evaluation, the dispute is indicated in the customs declaration and reported to the Special Arbitration Commission which is formed of:

  • A retired honorary judge acting as chairman of the Commission. The Minister of Justice shall appoint the said judge and another substitute judge.
  • Two legal Customs experts appointed as members on a case-by-case basis. The concerned party or its legal representative appoints the first expert and the competent customs administration appoints the second expert.

The Higher Council of Customs shall set the requirements that should be met in order to appoint legal experts. The said council appoints the legal experts upon the proposal of the Director General of Customs

4. Means of Payment of Duties

The duties are currently paid through one of the three means of payment indicated hereinafter:

•  In cash

•  By cheque . However, the cheque must be:

•  Issued by one of the banks to the order of the central Bank.

•  Initialed by the issuing bank that the balance exists

•  Or secured by a bank guarantee.

•  By promissory note deposited with the Head of the Central Deposit.

According to the customs system, goods may be retrieved by retrieval credits . Moreover, NAJIM allows the payment of duties electronically by making advance payments deposited at the customs treasury or by opening credits accounts for that purpose and they form a balance for the interested party out of which the duties are deducted electronically. However, these two means of payment are not currently applicable.

8. Duty Deferring Customs Status
The imported goods may be placed for local consumption, as indicated here above, or entered or transported from one place to another within the Lebanese territory or abroad. Meanwhile, the due customs duties and any other charges and taxes are temporarily suspended provided that they are guaranteed by secured undertakings or by cash or bank guarantees.

Any goods which are admitted under any case of duty deferring customs status may not be used or disposed of for any purposes other than those for which they were initially imported and declared in the surety bond that have been provided.

The cases of duty deferring are listed hereinafter with a brief explanation of each of these cases.

 
A)Transit (or transit goods)

Transit is a duty deferring customs status permitting the transport, through a Customs house in Lebanon and under Customs control, of foreign goods from one Customs house, warehouse or free zone to another Customs house, warehouse or free zone in Lebanon or abroad.

There are two types of transit: the ordinary transit and the international transit

The goods may be transported from one customs house to another in Lebanon according to same procedures which are applicable to ordinary or international transit.

Goods may be transported in transit among countries pursuant to international books or manifests or any other unified international documents. However, such transport is achieved through licensed companies and on board of vehicles of particular specifications.

1. Ordinary Transit
Ordinary transit may take place by all means of transport (by land, sea or air) without distinction at the risks of the signatory of the transit undertaking. Transport of goods shall be subject to the detailed declaration procedures provided that such declaration is covered by a surety bond including all the guarantees as may be required by the Administration and the destination office and indicating the period of transport. The goods are inspected in the same way which is applicable to the goods subject matter of detailed declarations.

Parcels of goods consigned under ordinary transit status shall be sealed with lead separately or in groups according to the terms and conditions provided for by the Administration.

When the goods reach the office of destination, the surety bond or any other substitute document is delivered to the customs office that issues the appropriate release after checking the veracity of the lead sealing and parcels.

2. International Transit
The international transit is limited to railway companies or authorized road transport companies , at the risk of these companies.

The Higher Council of Customs shall, after consulting the General Director of Customs, license such companies to carry out transport under international transit. The Higher Council of Customs shall also specify the routes that may be used for such transport while taking into consideration, if necessary, the treaties signed with the neighboring countries.

The goods consigned under the status of international transit are exempt from the procedures related to the detailed declaration and inspection and they are subject instead to brief declaration and inspection . However, they may be subject to such procedures in case of any suspected fraud or in cases where lead sealing cannot be applied.

The General Director of Customs shall specify the type and value of the bonds that should be provided by the licensed companies, as well as the terms and conditions of sealing of goods, the escort requirements, the preparation of the rail carriers, cars and special containers designed international transit.

B) Customs Warehouses

Customs warehouse status is a duty deferring status permitting temporary duty-free entry of goods for storage and manufacturing purposes .

The premises allocated for storage or manufacturing purposes shall be located either within or outside the Custom's vicinity. In both cases, they are subject to the supervision of Customs Administration and they are managed by public or private entities in agreement with the Customs Administration.

The storage warehouses are:

  • Public warehouses used for the storage of goods belonging to third parties.
  • Private warehouses used by the owner of the warehouse to store the goods which are licensed to be stored. Private warehouses are divided into private warehouses which are exclusively used for the storage of petroleum products or any other specific goods which are specified by the Higher Council of Customs. Such warehouses are known as the specialized warehouses .

The manufacturing warehouses are also known as the industrial warehouses .

A. Storage Warehouse

1. Common provisions for storage warehouses
The goods which are stored in a public, private or a specialized warehouse are considered to be located outside the Lebanese territories as far as the collection of duties. When goods exit such warehouses they shall be eligible for all statuses applicable to goods directly imported. In case goods are put for consumption they shall pay applicable duties according to their customs value and duty rates at the time of registration of the declaration under which are offered for consumption.

All passages of the public or the private warehouse are locked with unmanageable locks to the exception of the entrance and exit doors which are locked with two different keys and one of these keys is kept in possession of the Customs Administration.

The goods are admitted into the public, private, specialized or industrial warehouses pursuant to an entry declaration which is subject to the terms and conditions provided for in the Customs Act. For the purpose of controlling the movement of goods, the Customs Administration uses a special register which indicates all customs transactions.

The storage of goods in the public warehouse is limited to two years while they may be stored for a period of one year in the private, specialized or industrial warehouses. The General Director of Customs may prorogate such periods provided that the stored goods are maintained in good condition.

2. Public Warehouses
Transactions may be conducted under the status of public warehouses in some Lebanese ports or cities by decisions of the Higher Council of Customs after consulting the General Director of Customs. Such decision shall specify the locations where such warehouses may be created and the entities that will be in charge of their management provided that corporate purpose of such entities includes storage activities.

In case of theft or destruction resulting from a disaster or any other emergency, the depositor of goods shall, in case goods and customs duties are not guaranteed, be exempt from customs duties. However, Customs shall not assume any liability towards the depositor or for any loss or defect that may be incurred by the goods during the storage period.

3. Private Warehouses
Foreign goods may be deposited in a private warehouse in coastal or inner cities or suburbs thereof. The proprietor of the private warehouse shall be solely authorized to use the warehouse.

Private warehouse status shall be granted by virtue of a decision of the Higher Council of Customs, upon the consultation of the Director General, to business or industrial companies in order to store the goods which are exclusively designated by the said Council to re-sell them or use them once they are retrieved from the warehouse.

The Higher Council of Customs may grant private warehouse status, for a limited period of time to specific kinds of goods that are intended to be used in popular fairs and similar exhibitions. Warehouses should be maintained in a good condition and all ports secured with locks, except for entry and exit doors, which are locked by two different padlocks in compliance with the terms and conditions provided for in Article 199 of the Customs Act.

The private warehouse shall be open to all kinds of dutiable goods and goods which storage is relatively hazardous or requires special facilities except for any defected, prohibited, restricted or monopolized goods even if such goods have obtained an import license. This exception shall not apply to tobacco products which are admitted into warehouses owned by airlines companies at Beirut International Airport .

The operations which aim at preserving the goods may only be performed in the private warehouse. The depositor must file to this effect a special application that indicates the type, time and approximate duration of the work he intends to carry out. The operation shall be performed only in the continuous presence of a customs officer. The applicant shall pay travel expenses and compensation of the said officer.

The beneficiary of the private warehouse status shall pay a lump sum, as designated by the Higher Council of Customs upon the consultation of the Director General of Customs representing the control expenses performed by the Customs. Such compensation is payable in advance and may be modified each year.

4. Private Warehouses for Petroleum Products
Industrial and business companies, municipalities and chambers of commerce, may file applications in order to be licensed to set up private warehouses for petroleum products that may represent specific hazards if stored in public or private warehouses or that require special facilities for storage.

The right to set up a private warehouse for petroleum products and the products to be accepted into such warehouse shall be determined by decision of the Higher Council of Customs upon the consultation of the Director General and upon the approval of a committee including representatives of the relevant Mouhafaza, the Customs Administration, representatives of the Ministries of Public Health, Public Works, Transport, Industry, Energy and Environment and a representative of the municipality in the area of which the warehouse is to be established. In Beirut , such committee shall include a representative of the port administration and it shall determine by mutual agreement the allowances to be paid by the proprietor of the warehouses to the said administration for its right to collect storage charges.

Private warehouses for petroleum products shall meet all requirements set forth by national regulations with regard to establishments that may cause hazards to health and disturbance to citizens in the area. Such warehouses should be isolated for any building and built outside the port area. They should also be walled in according to safety and security requirements

The operations which may be performed in a private warehouse for petroleum products are limited to the change of the packages of goods, the transfer goods from one tank to another and the refill of goods in new packages.

5. Specialized Warehouses
Certain types of foreign goods may be subject to specialized warehouse status in commercial storehouses in both coastal and inner cities, whether or not such cities host a public or a private warehouse.

The provisions related to private warehouse shall apply to specialized warehouses. Depots intended for specialized warehouses shall be set up in the precinct of the city licensed to host the warehouse. The application to obtain the specialized warehouse status shall be filed to the Director General of Customs.

B) Industrial Warehouses

The industrial warehouse is a customs status permitting temporary duty-free admission of goods and products imported by national factories designated by the customs administration, to be used in the manufacture of their products.

Any and all items which enter the industrial warehouses must be manufactured and they may not be re-exported, put for consumption or stored in private warehouse or a free zone in their current condition as when admitted in the warehouse.

Provisions that apply to temporary entry status shall apply to goods admitted into the industrial warehouse, to compensation and products of compensation, due account being taken of the special requirements provided for hereinafter .

The General Director of Customs shall set the requirements in order to guarantee the payment of duties of the industrial warehouses. He may, at his sole discretion, accept personal or commercial guarantees.

With the exception of goods of public safety and public health concern, goods declared as destined for the industrial warehouse shall not be subject, when entering the warehouse, to the same restrictions imposed upon goods declared as offered for consumption. Prohibited goods of all kinds shall not be admitted into the industrial warehouse.

The goods are usually stored in the industrial warehouses for a period of one renewable year if such renewal is appropriately justified according to the general director of customs.

The manufactured goods stored in the industrial warehouses are re-exported , stored in a public warehouse or a free zone or put for consumption.

When for consumption, the duties of compensation products are paid according to:

  • The condition and value of the goods which are entered to the warehouse for manufacturing purposes at the date of the declaration under which goods are being put for consumption.
  • The condition of the compensation products when they are placed for consumption. The value of such goods is set by taking into consideration the cost of foreign materials which are used in the production process, net of the local value added tax.

When put for consumption, the compensation products may avail of the preferential tariff rates applicable to similar products according to the signed treaties provided that the beneficiary shall explicitly requests so in the application for the offer of goods for consumption and submits a statement issued by the Ministry of Industry confirming that the Lebanese value added is no less than 40%. In this case, the duties, which are in force at the date on which the goods are put for consumption, shall be applicable.

Any industrial enterprises which intends to avail of the industrial warehousing status must file an application with the Higher Council of Customs and it shall indicate therein the business address, the type of goods to be admitted in the warehouse, the type of operations to be conducted on the goods, the various products which are used in the manufacturing process and the condition of products after manufacturing. A certificate issued by the Ministry of Industry evidencing the capacity of the industrial business, a copy of the general budget and the income tax statement of the previous year shall be enclosed with the application.

The Higher Council of Customs shall decide on the application within a period of one month as of the date of filing the application after consulting the general director of customs. The decision shall specify the goods qualifying for the industrial warehousing status and if necessary, their quantities provided that such quantities shall not represent more than 50% of the turnover of the beneficiary in addition to the due fees.

C) Free Zones and Duty Free Shops

1. Free Zones

Free trade zones and free industrial zones may be created by allocating parts of the ports and internal premises for such purpose. These zones are considered to be outside the customs area.

Free zones shall admit all types of goods , whether of local or foreign origin, and they are not subject to any duties or taxes when they admitted in the free zone for export or re-export except for such taxes and duties which are levied by the entity that operates the free zone. Furthermore, these goods are not subject to any administrative restriction in case they are to other than the customs area.

No time limit shall be imposed as to the storage period in free zones.

The locations, borders, surface area and tenantable parts of the free zones are specified by decision of the Customs Higher Council following the approval of the Council of Ministers. The operation of the free zone which includes the method of fencing thereof, the control measures to prevent fraudulent outflows of goods to the Customs territory and the opening and closing hours shall be set by another decision.

The terms and conditions of operation of the free zones, the authorized transactions, the applicable legislation, the procedures of entry and exit of the goods and all other provisions in connection therewith are provided for in details in articles 242 to 261 of the Customs Act.

2. Duty- Free Shops

Duty free shops may be established in airports and ports.

Duty free shops are established by decision of the Higher Council of Customs, upon the consultation of the Director General of Customs and the approval of the Council of Ministers. The decision shall determine the operator, the operation period and the terms and conditions of entry and release of merchandise.

Goods maybe bought in duty free shops from departing and arriving travelers excluding pilots and personnel of air and maritime navigation companies.

All provisions applying to free zones shall apply to duty free shops. The operations permitted in duty free shops shall be restricted to the sorting of goods and the operations necessary for their preservation.

Duty free shops shall be subject to the permanent supervision of Customs. Customs officers shall have access to duty free shops at any time and the supervision expenses of the free shop are paid by the operator .

There are two free zones in Lebanon : the first one is located at the Port of Beirut and the second one at Tripoli port. The duty Free Shop is located at Beirut International Airport and the Lebanese government is seeking to establish various free zones in different cities in Lebanon.

 

D) Temporary Entry

1. Ordinary Temporary Entry

Goods of foreign origin imported into Lebanon for processing or additional processing purposes may benefit from deferral of payment of customs duties and other taxes and charges collected by the Customs Administration, provided the proprietors pledge, within the time frame set to this effect, to re-export or store such goods in public warehouses or free zones.

The Higher Council of Customs shall, upon the consultation of the Director General of Customs, define the type of goods that may benefit of duty deferral status for the purposes provided for in the previous paragraph, the type of the products of compensation eligible for customs duties and the conditions of customs control pertinent to each type of goods.

The temporary entry period of goods shall be set at six renewable months provided however that such period shall not be for more than two years.

The import of goods under temporary entry status requires the signature of an accepted undertaking including all guarantees specified by the Customs Administration and the completion of detailed declaration and inspection procedures.

Decisions related to goods admitted under temporary entry status for processing or additional processing purposes may authorize:

  • The settlement of temporary entry duties in exchange of compensation products of the same kind and technical specifications, by the signatory of the bond, rather than the settlement in kind;
  • The export of compensation products, prior to the import of necessary goods for the manufacture of such products, provided the circumstances of such export is justified.

The beneficiary of temporary entry status shall pay a fixed allowance set by the Higher Council of Customs, upon the consultation of the Director General when the discontinuous supervision is insufficient to control the situation.

Goods admitted under temporary entry status shall not be used for purposes other than those specified in the customs declaration.

2. Exceptional Temporary Entries
The Director General may authorize for a period of no more than three months, the import under temporary entry status of the products provided for hereinafter which are intended for a temporary use by their owners in compliance with the terms and conditions that he shall specify.

  1. Machinery and equipment which are used for the performance of works and projects of public interest.
  2. Machinery and equipment which are used for archeological works.
  3. Cinematographic machinery and equipment.
  4. Other professional machinery and equipment.
  5. Machinery and equipment for press, radio and television.
  6. Items temporarily imported for display or use in public or private exhibitions, seasonal fairs, forums, theaters, artistic shows and play grounds or the like.
  7. Jewelry and ornaments intended for display in public exhibitions.
  8. Appliances, instruments and transport means entering Lebanon for repair purposes.
  9. Detection implements, equipment and supplies used for installation and maintenance purposes.
  10. Containers, boxes and packages and any other filling and packaging units which are either filled or empty in order to be exported whether filled or empty.
  11. Commercial samples intended for display.
  12. Other imports of personal or exceptional character.

The items provided for in this article shall be re-exported or stored in the free zone or a public warehouse at the end of the authorized period of temporary entry status.

The products from 1- to 10 here above may be temporarily imported by using ATA books rather than the regular entry declarations. The period of import is set at six months.

In compliance with the terms and conditions set by the Director General of Customs, temporary entry status is applicable to:

  • The cars of persons coming to Lebanon for temporary stay with the aim of working with official public institutions, ministries and departments and whose employment contracts provide for their rights to bring their private cars to Lebanon, whether such cars are accompanied by them or bought from free zones or private warehouses.
  • The cars of the experts and personnel of the United Nations and any other Arab, regional and international organizations , whether such cars are bought from abroad or from free zones or private warehouses.
  • The Higher Council of Customs shall, determine other cases that may avail of temporary entry status on cars after consultation with the Director General.

3. Temporary Import of Items and Personal Effects Belonging to Persons Entering Lebanon for Temporary Stay

People coming to Lebanon for temporary stay may bring with them items intended for their personal use , temporarily exempt from customs duties due at the time of import, provided such items are re-exported within a period not exceeding on year. Such arrangement shall not apply to prohibited items.

4. Provisions related to cars

A. International Tourism

The owners of cars whose main residence is outside Lebanon and they are members of tourist clubs accepted by the Customs administration, may benefit from temporary entry rules for their cars and be exempt from charges provided such clubs shall guarantee on behalf of their members, if necessary, the settlement of due charges on the cars which are not re-exported within the specified period of time.

The commitment undertaken by such clubs shall be guaranteed before the Customs administration by cars and tourism clubs in Lebanon through a general undertaking submitted to the Customs administration.

The cars shall be imported under such status according to special documents called “trip tick” or a pass provided by the clubs concerned. Such documents shall be valid for one year as of the date of their delivery and for an unlimited number of trips during the said period.

Such status shall apply to cars, motorcycles and private jets and cruise ships.

B) Other Statuses :

Foreign cars which transport passengers and goods between Lebanon and other countries may benefit from temporary duty-free entry provided reciprocity is guaranteed and due account is taken of the conditions set out by the Higher Council of Customs, upon the consultation of the Director General.

The Director general may, under the conditions stipulated in Article 269 and the following Articles the Customs Act, authorize temporary duty-free import of cars into Lebanon for repair purposes , provided such cars are re-exported within six months after the date of registration of their customs procedures.

The cars described under the previous paragraphs shall not be used for transport, of any kind whatsoever, inside the Lebanese territory while staying in Lebanon otherwise they shall be subject to penalties provided for under the laws and regulations in force.

The provisions of international agreements on temporary import of cars shall be observed and the Director General shall specify the type of customs facilities that shall be granted to tourists.

 

9. Special Status and Treatments

A. Refund of Duties Levied on Re-exported Goods

Any customs duties, taxes or charges related to imported goods paid to the Customs administration when such goods are entered, may be refunded if such goods:

  • Are proved to be defective at the time of import
  • Do not conform to the clauses of the contract on the basis of which they were imported.
  • For any other reasons stated by the parties concerned and deemed acceptable by the Customs administration.

Refund of customs duties and other taxes and charges shall be subject to the re-export of the same goods to their country of origin within a period of three months in principle as of the date of submission of the export declaration.

Customs duties and other taxes and charges levied, upon entry on different types of products may be refunded provided such products do not have similar agricultural or industrial products in Lebanon unless the foreign origin of such products is proven beyond any doubt.

Refund of customs duties and other taxes and charges shall be subject to the conditions provided for hereinafter:

  • Goods should be kept in their original packages unless they are imported without packages and in this case they should be kept in their original condition at the time of import.
  • Goods should be re-exported by the original importer.
  • Not more than three years should elapse from the time of import of such goods.

The value declared at the time of re-export of goods shall be subject to the rules of valuation provided that such value shall not be more than the value stated in the import declaration and accepted by the Customs administration.

Customs duties and other taxes and charges imposed upon such goods shall be refunded on the basis of the tariff applicable at the time of import. If such goods were subject to lower tariffs at the time of re-export, customs duties and other taxes and charges shall be refunded on the basis of the lowered tariff. Goods that were subject to duties and charges at the time of import and exempt from such duties and charges at the time of re-export shall not benefit from refund.

The customs duties and other taxes and charges levied upon entry of certain foreign materials incorporated in the manufacture of local products may be refunded at the time of export of such product provided that the added value of the exported products is no less than 40%.

Customs duties and other taxes and charges shall be refunded totally, partially or according to fixed quantitative or qualitative rates defined for each item by decision of the Higher Council of Customs. Refunded duties are called compensation duties.

Goods eligible for duty drawback at the time of re-export shall be subject to the submission of a specific re-export declaration as specified by the Higher Council of Customs, pursuant to the proposal of the Director General. This declaration shall be subject to the procedures of the detailed declaration and inspection set forth under the Customs Act.

Such declaration should indicate the number and date of the customs declaration under which goods were imported and enclose a receipt proving that taxes and duties were paid at the time of import.

Duty drawback shall not include stamp duties. Duties and taxes shall be refunded within a period of no more than 30 days as of the date of filing the claim.

Taxes and duties levied at the time of import of machinery and equipments bought from the local Lebanese markets by the United Nations and the organizations affiliated with them may be refunded provided such machinery and equipments are proved to be legally imported with all taxes and duties settled.

B) Re-export of Goods

Foreign goods discharged in customs warehouses may be directly re-exported to other countries provided that the special guarantees and undertaking specified by the Customs administration are provided.

The same case shall apply to the provisioning of ships anchored in Lebanese ports and airplanes provisioned from private warehouses in Lebanese airports.

The general procedures and inspection procedures for re-exported goods shall be the same procedures provided for in Article 95 and Article 138 and, respectively, their subsequent Articles.

If the goods are re-exported from the same port where they were discharged by maritime agencies, the re-export applications are satisfactory and the goods are exempt from inspection and the confirmation of arrival procedures.

C) Goods returned to Lebanon by Exemption

The Customs Administration shall set forth the terms and conditions under which the returned goods are exempt of customs duties provided that their Lebanese origin is expressly proved and that the date of their export dates back to no more than two years.

The Customs Administration shall also specify the terms and conditions of granting exceptionally such privilege to some products and packages which became national products due to the regular payment of duties and which are re-imported during the same period after they have been re-exported.

D - Exemption of Customs Duties of used House furniture imported by Lebanese or Foreigner due to the transfer of place of residence.

Beneficiaries :

  • Lebanese returning to Lebanon permanently.
  • Foreigners staying in Lebanon .

Terms and conditions for availing of exemption by Lebanese returning to Lebanon :

  • The beneficiary should have been residing abroad for a period of no less than three uninterrupted or almost uninterrupted years. The residence abroad must be proved by a certificate issued by the local authorities in the foreign country and legalized by the Lebanese embassy, if any and their return to Lebanon must be permanent.
  • The imported furniture must be apparently used.
  • The imported items must correspond to the social status of its owner.

Terms and conditions for the exemption of foreigners having the intention of residing in Lebanon :

  • The applicant shall provide the required proofs that evidence his ownership of the furniture and that such furniture have been previously used during his residence abroad.
  • He should obtain a regular resident visa of no less than one year issued by the Lebanese General Directorate of Public Security . If the foreigner is an employee of a company, such company must issue a certificate indicating the type and duration of the contract signed with the said employee. This certificate should also be certified by the General Directorate of Public Security.
  • He must provide a title deed or a lease agreement recorded at the municipality where the real estate is located.

The IM4 form of customs declaration including the exemption must be filed either personally by the concerned parties or by the authorized forward agents.

The required documents are as follows:

  1. Shipment documents (manifest- shipment insurance policy- delivery permit et.)
  2. A detailed list of the furniture written by the concerned party indicating that such furniture was used personally for a period of no less than three years. This certificate must be certified by the local authorities if any, and the Lebanese consulate or the diplomatic mission at the country of residence. In the absence of any local authority, the diplomatic mission must mention this matter.
  3. A certificate of change of residence indicating that the concerned party has lived abroad for a period of no less than three years and that he is permanently settling down in Lebanon . This certificate shall be certified by the Lebanese consulate at the place of residence or by the Lebanese embassy.
  4. Title of property of a residence in Lebanon or a lease contract registered and signed by the concerned municipality.
  5. An undertaking by the interested party not to dispose of the furniture without informing the customs administration within a period of three years.
  6. An undertaking by the interested party not to import any other used furniture under the status of exemption.

Period of Procedure and Due Fees

The procedure is completed within a period of no more than three days except in the cases of any dispute between the Customs administration and the interested parties. In such case, the customs declaration shall include the causes of delay for not completing the procedure.

The procedure shall be subject to the stamp duty of LBP Fifty Thousand in addition to the services fee , which is set by the Higher Council of Customs, the overtimes due to customs officers if the procedure was completed after the official working hours and the storage fee provided for by the laws and regulations in force for the storage of goods in the customs warehouses.

Notes:

  • The means of transport of any type whatsoever are exempt including the household provisions.
  • In general, all the furniture must be imported in its condition . However, if any part thereof is imported (such as the bedroom), the applicant requesting exemption, shall undertake not to import any other furniture or to import the rest of the furniture within a period of three months not subject to renewal. However, all the terms and conditions applicable to the complete furniture are applicable in such case.
  • The furniture is imported to Lebanon when the place of residence is changed that is at the time of moving to Lebanon by the persons eligible to exemption within a period of no more than three months as of the date of moving to live in Lebanon. Such period may be extended, if necessary, by the Director of Customs.
  • The exemption shall include motorcycles, personal computers, sports equipment and any other personal and used items which are imported with the house furniture and classified as personal items including the piano. These items must be used and their number corresponds to the imported house furniture and the social status of`the applicant. M  
  • The house furniture that belongs to on% person`may not`be exempt more than once . If the concerned person is the proprietor of more tha. one residence abroad, (e must obtain an administrative prior permit for preliminary exemption and he shall filå thereafter, on`the basis of suãh prior`permit,`a compl%te procådure that satisfies all the terms and conditions in force.
  • Any used household appliances deriving from a famiìy legacy may avail from`exemption provided the applicant shall duly prove such ownership by providing a certificate authenticated by the authorities at the place of residence of the deceased or by notarized certificate stating the date of death and the degree of kinship with the deceased.
  • The customs shall decide at its sole discretion whether the furniture is used or not.

E. Personal Belongings, Household Effects and Items of Non-commercial Value.

The goods stated hereinafter are fully exempt of customs duties:

  • Clothes, apparel items and luggage intended for personal use.
  • Outfits of foreign students registered in Lebanon (Clothes and linen goods of all kinds) including married students arriving with their families to reside in Lebanon for high education purposes. The exemption shall apply to home appliances of married students.
  • Trousseau including new clothes and linen items of persons arriving to reside in Lebanon provided that one of the spouses resides in Lebanon .
  • Home appliances of all kinds used in normal housing and which are imported by citizens returning for good to Lebanon , or by foreigners coming to Lebanon for residence purposes.
  • Personal belongings, furniture and house hold effects brought in Lebanon by employees of Lebanese foreign diplomatic corps returning at the termination of their official assignments abroad.
  • Items received from a family member legacy.
  • Paraphernalia.
  • Personal musical instruments.

2. The above-mentioned articles must have been in use to the exception of trousseaus and legacies, mentioned here aboöe, that`they should match the status of their owners.

The items indicated hereinafter shall qualify for total exemption:

A. Samples of non-commercial value , personal dispatches `and occasional gifts , within limits specified by the Higher Council of Customs, after consulting the Director General of Customs. Any package o`gift of`no more`than LPB Two Hundred Thousand i3 qualified for exemption.

B. New`items and things acquired for personal use such`as cameras, watches and`telephones, tob!ccos, alcohols, perfumes and drugs brought by Lebanese or foreign travelers coming to Lebanon, within the limits and rules specified by the Higher Council of Customs, upon approval of the Director General of Customs. (See Section V hereunder: Passengers Procedures)

 

IV: SUMMARIZED PROCEDURES FOR THE CLEARANCE OF SOME PACKAGES.

As of the beginning of 1999, the Higher Council of Customs, by Memorandum 3337 dated 7 January 1999 , decided to implement the summarized procedures for the clearance of the following packages:

1. The goods which are not brought by the passenger at any customs offices to the exception of mail packages :

The value of these items is evaluated pursuant to fees statement rather than a customs declaration. These items shall include:

  • Consignments of goods which are not brought by passengers and having a value of no more than LBP one million per person for one manifest.
  • Consignments of clothes and personal items of no more than LBP five million.

2. Items brought by passengers.

Such items are evaluated according to the fees statements relevant to passengers and in compliance with the procedures provided for in Circular 107/95.

3. Items which are sent by packages and not through passengers.

Such items are evaluated according to the fees statements relevant to passengers and in compliance with the procedures provided for in Circular 107/95.

4. Express Courier packages sent to Beirut International Airport .

The summarized clearance mechanism, subject matter of the Memorandum of the Higher Council No. 2632 dated 31 July 1998 , is applicable to Express Courier packages sent to Beirut International Airport . The evaluations of no more than LBP One million are applicable for the clearance of the above-mentioned items .

V. PASSENGERS PROCEDURES

All passengers coming to or leaving the Lebanese territories must declare any and all items in their possession.

The luggage of the passengers is inspected. The Customs administration, may, at its sole discretion, check the identity of passenger.

1. Declaration at Departure

Any Lebanese person or a foreigner residing in Lebanon must declare in writing , when traveling abroad, any and all personal items indicated hereinafter and that he wishes to bring them back without being subject to customs duties:

  • Fur and valuable coats
  • Jewelries
  • Watches, cameras and similar items which value is over LPB Two Million Four Hundred Thousand (LBP 2.400.000) .
  • Any other similar items which number is over the number set for personal use are subject to the regular procedures of temporary export.

It is absolutely forbidden to export weapons, ammunitions, narcotics and archeological pieces and currencies.

These items are declared by using special cards according to the form attached herewith and made part hereof as Schedule III and in compliance with the procedures provided for hereinafter:

  • The list of items shall be typed on double papers so that each paper will form two copies. The second copy is filled by using carbon paper and it may be detached from the first paper.
  • The cards are filled either by the passenger himself or by the airline officers or the customs officers. In all cases, the card must be signed by the passenger.
  • This list must also be signed by customs controller or his representative after checking its content and values and making the required comments, if necessary.
  • The list shall have a serial registration number that shall be mentioned on both copies. The first registered copy is immediately delivered to the passenger and the second copy is intended to complete the registration procedure and is kept at the Customs administration as reference at the return of the passenger
  • The forms of such declaration are kept at the customs offices and they are distributed to the travel agencies and airlines offices. Any person, providing travel services, may acquire such printouts, at its own cost, provided that they comply with the requirements of dimensions and content of the Customs' form.

2. Value of Items which are admitted without restrictions

A. The passenger may enter the following items, duty fee:
  • Tobacco : 800 cigarettes or 1000 grams for pipes or 50 cigars or 100 cigarillos or 1000 grams of tobacco.
  • Alcohols : Two liters of whisky, champagne, cognac or any other similar products, or 4 liters of any other alcohols.
  • Perfumes : One liter of cologne or 100 grams of perfumes.
  • Medicines : the required quantity for personal use.
  • Non-commercial personal items within the limits provided for hereinafter:
    • LBP 500.000 : for Lebanese, Syrian and Jordanian passengers and foreigners living in Lebanon and Syria and Jordan and passengers coming from Syria and Jordan
    • LBP 2.000.000: for all passengers coming to Lebanon .
     
3. Terms and Conditions for availing of such facilities

Any person may avail of such facilities once every six months. Any persons that travel frequently may not avail of such exemption.

The value indicated here above might be alleviated for any person who is over eighteen years old.

Passengers under 18 years old may benefit of half of the sums provided for here above to the exception of tobacco and alcohols.

It is absolutely forbidden to enter any arms, ammunitions, narcotics, immoral publications and recordings.

These measures are applicable to all passengers passing through borders whether at the airports, ports or land borders.

4. Passengers Announcement

The measures provided for here above are published in Arabic, French and English in a visible place at the passengers' lounge. It is also distributed to the travel agencies, maritime agencies and airlines companies (See Announcement attached herewith).

TABLE OF CONTENT

Subject

I. INTRODUCTION

II. GENERAL PRINCIPLES

III. DECLARATIONS OF GOODS

1. Customs Statuses

2. Declaration by Customs Declaration

3. Authorized Customs Clearance Agents

4. Major Elements and Enclosures of Customs Declaration

A. Value

B. Country of Origin

C. Type of Goods

5. Customs Duties

A. Import

1. Customs Duty

2. Local Consumption Fee

3. The Value Added Tax

4. Stamp Duty

5. Claims of Exemptions

 

B. Export

C. Customs Services Fees

1. Storage Fee

2. Overtimes

3. Services Fee

 

6. Enclosures of the Customs Declaration

7. Customs Procedures

A) Customs Offices not implementing NAJIM Automated System

B) Offices implementing NAJIM Automated System

The Preparatory Phase: Prepare and enter or send and print

Phase I: Admission

Phase II: Inspection

Phase III: Payment

New aspects of NAJIM Automated system:

 

Principles, Rules and Procedures of Clearance:

 

1. Inspection in presence of the party that filed the declaration or his legal representative only.

 

2. Prohibition of referring the declaration from one employee to another by the declaring party after it has been accepted and registered by the Customs Administration.

 

3. Arbitration and Legal Expertise

4. Means of Payment of Duties

 

8. Duty Deferring Customs Status

A. Transit (or transit goods)

1. Ordinary Transit

2. International Transit

B) Customs Warehouses

A. Storage Warehouse

1. Common provisions for storage warehouses

2. Public Warehouses

3. Private Warehouses

4. Private Warehouses for Petroleum Products

5. Specialized Warehouses

B) Industrial Warehouses

C) Free Zones and Duty Free Shops

1. Free Zones

2. Duty- Free Shops

 

D) Temporary Entry

1. Ordinary Temporary Entry

2. Exceptional Temporary Entries

3. Temporary Import of Items and Personal Effects Belonging to Persons Entering Lebanon for Temporary Stay

 

4. Provisions related to cars

 

9. Special Status and Treatments

A. Refund of Duties Levied on Re-exported Goods

B) Re-export of Goods

C) Goods returned to Lebanon by Exemption

D) Exemption of Customs Duties of used House furniture imported by Lebanese or Foreigner due to the transfer of place of residence.

E) Personal Belongings, Household Effects and Items of Non-commercial Value.

 

IV: SUMMARIZED PROCEDURES FOR THE CLEARANCE OF SOME PACKAGES.

 

V. PASSENGERS PROCEDURES

1. Declaration at Departure

2.Value of Items which are admitted without restrictions

3.Terms and Conditions for availing of such facilities

4. Passengers Announcement