09 Oct Philippine passport not required to send ‘balikbayan boxes’.
Filipino expats should rejoice as several of the documents required to send a parcel back to the Philippines — locally known as balikbayan boxes — are no longer required.
According to a report by GMA News, overseas Filipino workers will no longer have to submit a proof of purchase for items inside balikbayan boxes sent to the Philippines. A statement made by the Bureau of Customs on their Facebook page also revealed that additional documents such as the Information Sheet and a photocopy of Philippine passport are also not needed.
“The Bureau of Customs has temporarily suspended the guidelines in the implementation of the duty and tax-free privilege of consolidated balikbayan boxes, following the upsurge of criticisms among overseas Filipino workers (OFW) on the guidelines in availing tax-exempt privilege. ”
The suspension of the guidelines is until March 31, 2018.
These policies state that Filipino citizens who send balikbayan boxes to the Philippines are required to submit a photocopy of their passport; fill up an information sheet; and provide a copy of the invoice, receipt or proof of payment of the goods contained in the balikbayan box. These requirements were put in place for those who wish to avail of the government’s tax-exemption.
Customs Commissioner Isidro Lapeña also said that “With the suspension of the current procedure on balikbayan box, the previous regulation will be enforced.”