THE Bureau of Customs Port of Cebu has exceeded its collection target for the month of December, further adding to its annual surplus.
The bureau reported that in the first 23 days of December alone, it had collected P2.684 billion, exceeding the P2.554 billion target by P130 million or 5.08 percent.
The good news comes after the port exceeded its P27.539 billion target for the whole year as early as November when collections for the first 11 months of the year reached P27.872 billion.
This brings the port's annual surplus to P460 million.
In a statement, Port of Cebu acting district collector Charlito Martin Mendoza attributed the port's good performance to its frontline officers "tirelessly putting in the extra effort this December to process and release goods without delay."
To facilitate trade, the Port of Cebu has also rolled out its Electronic Tracking of Containerized Cargo (E-Tracc) System for containerized shipments initially covering Philippine Economic Zone Authority (Peza)-bound shipments.
With the E-Tracc System, customs officers no longer need to physically accompany the delivery of shipments from the Port of Cebu to their destination.
Port of Cebu deputy district collector for operations Marc Anthony Patriarca said in a separate statement: "We will be able to identify fraudulent acts when these cargoes depart from our Port. Utilizing information and communications technology, the interest of the government is protected while making sure that our stakeholders are not inconvenienced."
The E-Tracc System is a web-based platform that generates "real-time information to monitor the movement and location of containers using GPS-enabled customs seal," the Port said.
The technology sends an alarm to the Port if there are unauthorized trips, deviations from normal routes and tampering of the seals.
The system was launched in the first week of December after training was provided by Ascent Solutions Philippines Inc., which provided the system's hardware and software.
The Peza locator first books a trip using the E-Tracc System for a container to be armed with the Electronic Customs Seal. The Port Operations Division then authorizes the truck to leave the port and head for the destined Peza locator where, upon arrival, the integrity of the customs seal is checked before it is removed from the container. (CTL/PR)