Jurisdiction to impose penalties of customs agency in the field of oil, petroleum and gas clarified

VCN - Compared with the previous regulations in Decree 99/2020 / ND-CP on the administrative penalties in the oil and gas sector, petroleum and gas trading (hereinafter referred to as Decree 99) recentlyissued by the Government, the Customs jurisdiction has been specified and has new points. If under the previous regulations, the customs has the right to impose maximum penalties on acts of violations, under Decree 99, the jurisdiction to impose penalties and penalty levels of customs agencies is clarified for violating individuals and organizations
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Customs officers inspect imported petroleum. Photo: M.Hung

On August 26, 2020, the Government issued Decree 99, including six Chapters and 65 articles, prescribing administrative violations, penalties, fines, remedial measures, the jurisdiction to impose penalties against administrative violations and the jurisdiction to make records of administrative violations against regulations on oil and gas, and petroleum and gas trading. The jurisdiction of the customs agency over this field is specified in Article 60.

According to the representative of the Legal Department under the General Department of Customs, in Decree 99, the sanctioning jurisdiction of the customs agency is quite clear and eliminates the sanctioning jurisdiction for some specific titles. Accordingly, the manager of customs branch, the manager of post-customs clearance audit branch and the head of enforcement unit under provincial, inter-provincial and city customs department, the head of anti-smuggling and enforcement team, the head of the customs procedures team, the head of customs marine enforcement fleet and the head of IPR protection enforcement unit under the customs investigation and anti-smuggling department, General Department of Vietnam, have the right to impose a fine of up to VND25 million and VND50 million for an individual and an organization respectively; have the right to confiscate material evidence and vehicles used for administrative violation with a value that is not higher than the fine specified in this decree and enforce the remedial measures prescribed in this decree.

According to the Legal Department under the General Department of Customs, compared with the previous regulations, in this Decree, the jurisdiction of the customs agency has been stipulated more clearly and specifically.

In Decree 67/2017 / ND-CP dated May 25, 2017, of the Government stipulating the sanctions for administrative violations in the oil and gas sector, petroleum and gas trading (Article 77), the customs agency has the right to impose the general penalty level applicable to acts of violations.

Specifically, the customs officer on official duty has the right to impose a fine of VND1 million. The team leader of the customs branch and the team leader of the post-customs clearance audit branchhave the right to impose a fine of up to VND10 million. The manager of the customs branch, the manager of post-customs clearance audit branch and the head of enforcement unit under provincial, inter-provincial and city customs departments, the head of anti-smuggling and enforcement team, the head of the customs procedures team, the head of customs marine enforcement fleet and the head of IPR protection enforcement unit under the customs investigation and anti-smuggling department, General Department of Vietnam have the right to impose a fine of up to VND50 million and has the right to confiscate material evidence and vehicles with a value that is not higher than the fine specified at Point a, Clause 3, Article 77; and take remedial measures mentioned in Points d, đ, g, i and k of Clause 1, Article 28 of the Law on Penalties for administrative violations.

The director of the Anti-Smuggling Investigation Department, the director of the Post-Customs Clearance Audit Department under the General Department of Customs, and directors of provincial, inter-provincial and city customs departments are entitled to a impose fine of up to VND100 million; have the right to suspend operations for a definite period or to deprive the right to use licenses or practice certificates for a definite period; confiscate material evidences and/or vehicles with a value that is not higher than the prescribed fine; and take remedial measures mentioned in Points d,g, i and k of Clause 1, Article 28 of the Law on Penalties for administrative violations and Clause 3, Article 3 of this decree.

Clause 5, Article 77 of Decree 67/2017 / ND-CP, defines the jurisdiction for the title of Director General of the General Department of Customs. Accordingly, the Director General has the right to fine up to VND2 billion for violations in the oil and gas sector, up to VND200 million VND for violations in the petroleum and gas trading and confiscate material evidence and vehicles; and take remedial measures mentioned in Points d, đ, g, i and k of Clause 1, Article 28 of the Law on Penalties for administrative violations and Clause 3, Article 3 of this decree.

The Director of Smuggling Investigation Department, Director of Post-clearance Audit Department affiliated to the General Department of Customs and Directors of provincial, inter-provincial or city Customs Departments are entitled to impose a maximum fine of VND50 million and VND100 million on an individual and an organization respectively; confiscate the material evidence and vehicles used for administrative violation commission with the value not exceeding the fine specified in Point a of this Clause; enforce the remedial measures mentioned in Points b, d, and e of Clause 3, Article 4 of this decree; and suspend the petrol and oil trading license or the gas trading license or suspend the operation for a definite period and enforce the remedial measures mentioned in Points b, d, đ and e of Clause 3, Article 4 of this decree.

With regard to the jurisdiction the Director General of the General Department of Customs, Decree 99 no longer provides for specific acts of violation but stipulates specific fines for individuals and organizations. Specifically, the Director General of the General Department of Customs is entitled to impose a maximum fine of VND100 million and VND200 million on organizations; confiscate material evidence and vehicles used for administrative violations; and enforce the remedial measures as prescribed in this Decree.

Besides, the representative of the Legal Department said that, compared with the previous regulations, the jurisdiction of the Customs agency in Decree 99 has many new points. Accordingly, Decree 67/2017 / ND-CP defines the jurisdiction for the titles of customs officer on duty, team leader of customs branch team leader of post-customs clearance audit branch, head of customs procedures unit but in the Decree 99, the jurisdiction to impose penalties for these titles have beenremoved.

Thus, the new regulations on customs jurisdictions under Decree 99 that will come into effect from October 11, 2020 and replace Decree 67/2017 / ND-CP dated May 25, 2017 have been clarified to create a legal corridor for the customs agency to apply and carry out effectively.

Regulations on customs-related administrative penalties specified Regulations on customs-related administrative penalties specified
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The regulations on the jurisdiction of the authorities will also improve the compliance with the law; have enough sanctions to prevent the acts of violations arising in the oil and gas sector.

By Nu Bui/ Huyen Trang

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