- What we do?
- Vission,Mission & Values
- Who we are?
- Our Director
- Our Organisational Structure
- Our Role
- Organisational Chart
- Directory for al sections
- Customs' Careers
- Customs' Media Centre
- Contacts & Hotline
The Mauritius Customs forms part of the Mauritius Revenue Authority (MRA) with the job of protecting the community from potential risks arising from international trade and travel, while facilitating the legitimate movement of people and goods across the border. When talking of border we mainly refer to the port and airport which represent the borders of the island.
Every effort is being done to carry out our missions diligently, that is to protect the society and the economy, to ensure security and to collect revenue for the government. We do this by:
- intercepting smuggling and contraband (such as illegal drugs)
- checking travellers and their baggage, cargo and mail
- setting up ‘Stand Alone’ applications for various reforms/control programmes (IT)
- assessing and collecting Customs duties, excise duties and VAT on imports
- protecting businesses against illegal trade while facilitating legitimate trade
- enforcing import and export restrictions and prohibitions
- collecting accurate import and export data.
As the gatekeepers of Mauritius, we use intelligence and risk assessment to target our physical checks of containers, vessels or travellers. We also conduct investigations and audits, and prosecute offenders.
We work closely with the other agencies like the Ministry of Agro-Industry and Fisheries, the Ministry of Health and Quality of Life, the Government Pharmacist, the Veterinary Services, the Police, etc.
To be a world class Revenue Authority respected for its professionalism, efficiency, fairness, integrity and its contribution to our socio-economic development.
To continually reform and modernise tax administration in order to manage and operate an effective and efficient revenue raising organisation comprising of highly motivated and skilled staff.
- Transparency and Accountability
Customs has around 650 staff covering the airport, port, freeport, freight stations and headquarters. We form part of the Mauritius Revenue Authority which is under the aegis of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development.
Mr Bert Cunningham assumed the post of Comptroller of Customs in 2002 and with the introduction of the MRA in July 2006 he was appointed Director, Customs Department.
Customs is organised into several interconnected operational units attached to sections under the responsibility of a section head. The sections are:
- Pats Air Cargo
- Trade Facilitation, Tariff and Customs Cooperation
- Seaport Operation
- Information Technology (IT)
- Preventive and Drugs
- Deferral Regimes
- Airport (SSR)
Customs has three basic functions:
- Fiscal function - which consist of collecting and protecting government revenue in the for of customs duty, excise duty and VAT
- Protection/security function-i.e. ensuring the security and protection of the country. For instance, preventing prohibited goods (drugs, firearms, etc) from entering the country.
- Economic function-in customs jargon this function is known as trade facilitation. That is providing facility, fluidity and security to the business community.
During the last decade, we have seen an evolution of the customs functions. In fact, the fiscal function which was considered to be the main mission of customs has been overlapped by the other functions. Nowadays, the economic mission is considered to be the most important function together with the security/protection function. These two functions when performed effectively results to a secure environment where business is easily carried out. This also results to the securing of the supply chain.
On the other hand, with the reduction and/or elimination of tariff barriers, the revenue collector role of Customs has been retrograded. Modern Customs is nowadays considered as an economic partner to stakeholders, as well as the gatekeeper against the importation/trade of prohibited items.
To accomplish its functions effectively and efficiently, customs uses up to date tools which allows the targeting of cargo and passengers. Some of the tools are listed below:
- Risk-Management And Intelligence
The use of advance electronic information on cargo and passengers allows Customs to improve their profiling methods. Lesser time is spent towards less risky consignment and passengers while more time can be allocated for risky ones.
In addition to that, intelligence works allow the collection, analysis and dissemination of important information to the various sections.
- Investigations And Enforcement
The Investigations unit investigates and prosecutes individuals and organisations engaged in the international trade of illicit commodities and the evasion of duties and tariffs. Some of the most common investigations that customs undertake are listed below:
Customs (Customs Drug Unit) works closely with the Police to investigate the smuggling of drugs across our borders.
As well as specific drug investigations, the unit is actively involved in intelligence gathering and targeted operations against national and international organised crime networks. Prosecution in drug matters is done by the Police.
Customs investigates suspected cases where importers or exporters have deliberately evaded duty and/or VAT. This can be done both at clearance time of the Cargo and also after clearance by Post-Clearance Audit Teams (PCAT).
- Prohibited Goods
Customs has a monitoring and an investigative role for the export and import of prohibited or controlled goods. This ensures consumer and environmental protection Some specific areas include:
- intellectual property rights – counterfeit, trademark and copyright goods
- objectionable publications - child pornography, bestiality, sexual violence, etc.
- firearms and offensive weapons
- import and export prohibitions.
- Wildlife Protection
Customs is also engaged in the protection of wildlife species through the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (C.I.T.E.S). The signatories of this convention are dedicated to the detection and prevention of trade in endangered species. It is a joint initiative of Customs and the National Parks & Conservation Service. Customs has been assigned the responsibility for the prevention of illegal trade in fauna and flora involving import, export and transit.
Mauritius Revenue Authority-Customs Department is sub-divided into ten sections under the responsibility of ten Section Heads. Each section is further sub-divided into Units and sub-sections. The main units and sub-sections are listed below:
- PATS Air Cargo(Autonomous)
- Air Cargo Plaisance
- Customs clearance for air freight cargo
- Parcel Post
- Courier Services
- Trade Facilitation, Tariff abd Customs Cooperation
- Auction Sales
- Customs Offence Reports(COR)
- International Affairs
- Registration and Trade Facilitation
- Capacity Building Unit
- Seaport Opeartion
- Customs Clearance of sea freight Cargo
- Reception Desk
- Clearing and Forwarding Stations
- Returning residents
- Information Technology(IT)
- Customs Management System (CMS)
- Customs Intranet and website maintenance
- Post-Control Audit (PCA)
- Valuation second hand vehicles
- Valuation PATS
- Outstations (manufacturers, distiller/bottler)
- Bank Guarantee
- Assessing excise duties on relevant domestic production
- Post-control Audit
- Excise Stamps
- Preventive and Drugs
- Port Preventive/ Surveillance Uint
- JPDU - Joint Customs/Police Port Unit
- CDU - Customs Drug Unit (Airport)
- K/9 - Customs Cannine Unit
- SFH - Sea Food Hub Unit*
- Deferal Regimes
- Bank Guarantee
- Exemption monitoring unit
- Duty free shop
- Industry Section
- Flexible Anti-Smuggling Team (FAST)
- Risk Management and Intelligence
- Anti-Money Laundering Unit
- Investigation Teams
- Airport (SSR)
- Passengers and crew clearance
- Facilitating legitimate passengers
- Passengers and baggage search
- Profiling and Risk Management
- Collection of duties and VAT
- Application of international alert instructions in respect of passengers and crew
- News concerning customs Matters
- Changes in customs legislation/procedures
- Customs house
- Drug seizures
- Other Activities
- Information to Stakeholders
- Magazines and leaflets
- Annual reports