Advocacy Win: Food Safety and Standards Authority of India issues advisory to facilitate faster clearance of F&D imports
On 12 October 2022, India’s Ministry of Health and Family Welfare/Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) issued an advisory facilitating the advance processing of the Bill of Entry in the Food Import Clearance System (FICS) of FSSAI.
The order states that this advisory has been issued with the objective to facilitate faster clearance of articles of food and drinks imported into India, minimise the clearance time, and reduce the demurrage charges as incurred on the F&D imports. It further encourages all the Food Business Operators (FBOs) to avail this facility of advanced processing of the bill of entry in FICS while importing the F&D consignments.
On behalf of UK food and drink companies and jointly with other neutral stakeholders, the UKIBC has been engaged with FSSAI on the said concern of delays in the shipment clearance process. FSSAI has noted that several importers file advance bill of entry in ICEGATE (electronic portal of central board of excise and customs) but, when transmitted to FSSAI for examination, importers or importer representatives won’t file it on FICS, which resulted in delays in the consignment clearance and further financial burdens on businesses.
FSSAI subsequently issued an advisory advancing the process of filing of bill of entry in FICS.
This welcome, forward-looking approach has resulted in final publication of the subject order, which will directly benefit both national and international businesses active in the food and drink sector by helping to reduce the overall procedural and financial burden. This positive change is also reflective of the forward-looking approach of the Indian authorities and their willingness to engage with industry stakeholders to create a business-friendly environment.
UKIBC wishes to thank the FSSAI for this constructive approach to enable business success, with particular thanks to Dr Amit Sharma, Director Imports, FSSAI. We applaud the continued efforts of the authorities in India towards creating a favourable environment for businesses to operate.
For more technical details related to the subject announcement and others contact UKIBC Head of Food and Drink, Shubhi Mishra: firstname.lastname@example.org.