Press Release

Customs introduces track and trace service

Source: Jamaica Observer

KINGSTON, Jamaica - The Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) has introduced a track and trace service to facilitate transparency for traders and their representatives in handling customs declarations. 

Chief Information Officer André Williams explained that the feature will allow the trader or their representative, in this instance a customs broker, to enter details specific to the declarations and be provided with the current status for processing.

“We process a number of declarations on a daily basis and there is a need for greater visibility regarding submission and letting traders know exactly where their document is in the process, all the way through to releasing of the cargo,” he said.

Williams pointed out that the trader or the importer would also be interested in knowing the turnaround time and, in the event that there are any issues, what point in the process these arise.
The customs broker will also be able to view the remarks from the Inspection Act, when a declaration has been routed to query by customs.

“This is one of our trade facilitation-related initiatives which would improve visibility and provide the traders with real-time information,” he said.

“Track and trace is a portal where the trader or his representative will enter a minimum amount of information pertaining to a declaration. For example, the office code, the year, their internal reference code and the taxpayer registration number for the broker or the importer,” he further explained.

After this submission, Williams said that the system will respond with all of the points of intervention for which the shipment would be flagged.

He said it is also important to note that within the customs system, the other regulatory authorities are also carrying out their inspection functions, so if there is a need for another regulatory authority to have an intervention, such as documentary review or for inspection of the shipment, that will also be shown or displayed to the trader or the importer or the declarant.



Jamaica Customs - Committed to Our Stakeholders, Committed to Jamaica

The Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) remains committed to executing its mandate of trade facilitation, equitable revenue collection and border protection, notwithstanding the challenges of Covid-19.

To this end, the Agency continues to serve its various stakeholders, thereby ensuring that the economy of Jamaica is sustained, and that supplies required to aid in the fight against Covid-19 are made available, as well as all other goods, for use in the various sectors, including manufacturing.

Adherence to Established Public Health Protocols
The JCA has implemented several measures directly aimed at preventing and containing the spread of Covid-19. These measures are in accordance with the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Wellness and by extension, the World Health Organisation (WHO). The Agency is also guided by the various orders promulgated under the Disaster Risk Management Act.

When performing duties, including while visiting the premises of stakeholders, officers of the Agency adhere to the established guidelines regarding the wearing of masks, sanitisation, temperature checks, and social distancing.

Enhancing Our Operational Efficiency
In light of COVID-19, the Agency has also accelerated the automation of several business processes and has made adjustments in the way many of its procedures are conducted, with a view to protecting staff and stakeholders. The Agency will continue to observe and adhere to the recommendations of the public health professionals and work closely with all partners in implementing same.

Capturing of Medically-related Information
In the execution of their duties, officers of the Agency bear an official identification card, which indicates the name and capacity of the officer. Should any issues arise with respect to contact tracing or service delivery, stakeholders are encouraged to contact the Agency through the requisite channels. The Agency urges entities with which it work closely, to ensure that all procedures are in keeping with the established guidelines of the Health Ministry.

The JCA will continue to work amicably with our various stakeholders, as together, we seek to combat this virus. Let us keep our families, organisations and country safe.

Velma Ricketts Walker, J.P.
CEO/ Commissioner
Jamaica Customs Agency



Jamaica Customs Introduces Online Applications for Refunds – As of August 24

The Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) is advising importers that starting Monday, August 24, 2020, that all applications for refunds must be submitted online at:  Previously, applicants were required to manually submit a letter to the Collector of Customs, detailing the circumstances for requesting the refund.

Importers are also being reminded that all applications must be made within two years after such overpayment is made, as stipulated in Section 50 of the Customs Act.

The Act states that:   

“The Commissioner shall return any money which shall have been overpaid as duties of Customs at any time within two years after such overpayment, on the proper document for such overpayment being certified by the proper officer.”

Steps for Making an Application for Refunds Online:

  1. Applicant accesses JCA website at:;
  2. Applicants reads and agree to terms and conditions;
  3. Applicant selects “Apply” once there is agreement with the Terms and Conditions;
  4. Applicant completes application form, select preview, and click ‘submit’;
  5. Application is reviewed and processed once there are no outstanding matters relating to the application;
  6. Application is submitted for payment to the account number provided;
  7. Applicant is sent an e-mail notification of payment to their account, at the e-mail address provided on the refund application form.

Reasons for a refund include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Missing or incorrect use of ANC/exemption codes
  • Duplication of duty payment
  • Cancellation of declaration
  • Duplication of invoices
  • Incorrect classification
  • Error when inputting figures relating to duty payment
  • Incorrect currency
  • Incorrect freight charges
  • Revaluation after appeal
  • Incorrect terms of delivery
  • Incorrect fuel type for vehicle
  • Refund of deposit after temporary importation
  • Drawback of duty
  • Duplication of fee payments
  • Short-landing/short-shipment after full duty payment
  • Application of special waiver

The JCA is assuring stakeholders that it will continue to implement customer-focused measures and initiatives, in order to ensure continuous improvement in its service delivery.

For information on this and other Customs-related matters, customers may email:,, or telephone: 876-922-5140-8.



Jamaica Customs Re-Opens Corporate Offices – Urges Stakeholders to Be Vigilant

The Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) is advising its stakeholders that all its offices are now open to the public, following the closure of its Newport East and King Street offices in Kingston, on Monday, August 10, 2020, due to a confirmed case of COVID-19 with one of its employees. 

A comprehensive sanitisation exercise of the facilities has since been done.

The JCA will continue to institute and practise the public health protocols geared at preventing, and combating COVID-19, and urges its stakeholders to remain vigilant in the fight against the virus.

In this respect, the Agency is reminding all its stakeholders visiting or conducting business at its locations to wear their masks, undertake temperature checks and also hand-sanitise. 

The JCA is also encouraging its customers to utilise its online channels, such as Live Chat and its Customer Relationship and Feedback Platform, located on its website:, to make queries or to lodge reports. They may also send their questions by email to and, or telephone 876-922-5140-8.

The JCA thanks its stakeholders for their cooperation, and will continue to serve them efficiently.








The Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) is advising all its stakeholders that due to an emerging situation, all its offices located at Newport East and King Street, Kingston, will be closed this Monday, August 10, 2020.

The JCA is assuring its customers that the entity will continue to provide all online services and that staff will continue to liaise with customers under its teleworking regime.

The entity is further advising that all other Customs offices, including locations at the air and sea ports will remain open to the public.

CEO/Commissioner of Customs, Velma Ricketts Walker said that the closure of these two Customs locations is due to a confirmed case of COVID-19 with one of its employees. 

She indicated that the offices are currently undergoing a comprehensive sanitising excercise and that the closure is a precautionary measure for both staff and customers.

The Commissioner also reiterated that the entity will continue to institute and practise the public health measures geared at preventing and combating COVID-19.

The JCA's Newport East and King Street offices will re-open for regular business on Tuesday, August 11.

Jamaica Customs, thanks its stakeholders for their understanding, and will continue to serve you efficiently and effectively.



‘Buyers Beware of Scammers’ – Warns Jamaica Customs

The Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) is reminding persons interested in purchasing goods on auction, including motor vehicles, to comply with the Agency’s standard operating procedures, in order to prevent being scammed by persons purporting to be able to sell vehicles on Customs auctions to them.

In this respect the public is asked to note the following guidelines:

  • All public auctions are advertised in the newspaper thirty (30) days before the date of the auction (section 88, sub-sections 1 & 2 of the Customs Act specify the process by which goods deposited within a Queen’s Warehouse shall be sold).
  • The JCA only sells goods on auctions and will not sell any item outside of the guidelines laid out in the Customs Act and its Regulations. Any item placed on public auction, such as a motor vehicle, which is not sold at that auction, will only be resold at a subsequent auction.
  • All motor vehicles are sold through competitive bidding, and no individual bidder is accorded special treatment or privilege.
  • The Agency will not use email or telephone to offer items for sale and all payments are only to be done at the Jamaica Customs Agency’s Cashier, on the day of the auction. Cheques must be written in the name: ‘Collector of Customs’.

Registration for an Auction

Persons wishing to participate in an auction must register through the JCA. Registration takes place at Queen’s Warehouse – 230 Spanish Town Road; Queen’s Warehouse – Norman Manley International Airport (NMIA); Queen’s Warehouse – Sangster International Airport (SIA); Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.  Registration of bidders closes at 3:00 p.m. on the day before an auction.

Applicants are required to submit the following:

  • Two (2) passport sized photographs
  • Taxpayer Registration Number (TRN) Card
  • Valid Government Issued Identification (Driver’s Licence, Passport,  Electoral ID)
  • Bidder’s Registration Fee of Two Thousand Dollars ($2,000.00). The bidder will be given a Bidder’s Registration Card which expires on December 31 each year.

The Agency also takes this opportunity to remind consumers that due to the onset of COVID-19, that the Agency has suspended the hosting of public auctions, until further notice. Auctions done by Private Treaty, are however still being undertaken.  Persons may call the Agency at 876-922-5140-8 for details.




Jamaica Customs Introduces Online Procedures for Returning Residents

In keeping with its thrust to increase operational efficiency and further enhance its relationships with its stakeholders, the Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) has been engaged in a process of continuous improvement to ensure the best delivery of services to its customers. 

With the onset of COVID-19, many organisations, including the JCA, has had to find new and innovative ways to conduct their business operations effectively and safely.

In this regard, the JCA has automated the application process for the granting of Returning Resident and Returning Student Status and the accessing of related benefits.  The Agency has also revised some of the documentary requirements to improve efficiency in the verification process and enhance the customer experience.

The new process now facilitates the use of an online application process for provisional approval, prior to the arrival of the Returning Resident and the Returning Student once all requirements are satisfied.  Hence, individuals applying for Returning Resident/Returning Student status are no longer required to visit the offices of the Jamaica Customs Agency for their applications to be processed.

Online Application Process:

  1. Applicant logs on to the website and completes the Registration Form.
  2. Computer system generates a username and password to access the Application Form.
  3. Applicant accesses the application portal/platform by entering the username and password, and completes the Application Form, uploads the required documents and submits online.
  4. Application is reviewed by the Returning Resident Unit and approval granted once all requirements are satisfied.
  5. Applicants may be interviewed if required, and a request made for them to schedule an appointment for an interview, using the online portal on the website. Applicant may also voluntarily request an interview for additional information or where the application has been denied.
  6. An Exemption Notice is generated by the Returning Residents Unit and issued to the applicant for submission to the Customs Broker who will use same, when preparing the Customs Declaration in ASYCUDA to clear shipment (s) on the port.

The JCA is also reminding Returning Residents and importers generally, that regardless of their status, that they must satisfy all other requirements connected with the importation and clearance of their goods.  This will include other documentary requirements, physical examination, and any other requirements, relating to other Border Regulatory Agencies (BRA).

Click here to register for the online session.

For further information on this, and other customs-related matters, customers may contact the Returning Resident and Customer Service Units at: 876-922-5140-8 or email:  



Scrap Metal Exporters Must Register Through JSWIFT Portal – No Manual Applications Will be Accepted

In keeping with measures to increase efficiency, all Scrap Metal Exporters requiring permits from the Trade Board Limited (TBL), are being reminded that effective Monday, June 22, 2020, they must register through the Jamaica Single Window for Trade (JSWIFT) portal at, as manual applications will no longer be accepted by the TBL.

Trade Administrator/CEO of the TBL, Douglas Webster, described this move as a timely one, considering the thrust to re-energise Jamaican exports by, among other things, making related transactions easier to carry out. He indicated that the Trade Board is “delighted to put in practice something that has been discussed for a long time. Single Window is a game changer for the exporters and importers and by extension for Jamaica.”

Mr. Webster mentioned that “the main features of JSWIFT for scrap metal exporters include the ability to attach required documents, submit payment and view the status of an application.”

“Scrap metal exporters who are applying for permits would usually submit a number of physical documents such as a completed application form, certificate of bond, TCC, proof of registration by JAMPRO, certificate of incorporation, TRN, valid ID, police record, among others,” he pointed out.

Andre Williams, Chief Information Officer (CIO) of the Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) and Project Manager for JSWIFT, stated that, “the automated services, involving online licensing and permit applications now being introduced for exports, is the first for the sector, and is a major step in the right direction for improving service delivery.”

“Based on our interaction with exporters, this is indeed a welcomed change and a drastic improvement from what previously existed,” he added.

Mr. Webster noted that his staff is fully prepared for this and has received extensive training from the JSWIFT team. Sharon Mais-Kleinhans, an exporter, said she is “happy for the change.” She expressed the view that “the online system will be more efficient and approval should be quicker.”

For further information, exporters may contact the JSWIFT Client Support Team at: or, or by telephone at 876-750-3096-7. They may also contact the TBL at The JSWIFT project is being implemented on a phased basis, by the JCA, in collaboration with other border regulatory agencies.



Jamaica Customs Reminds Customs Brokers and Clerks of Submission Deadline Of TCC and Police Record to Entity

The Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) is reminding Customs Brokers and Broker Clerks that they have a period of three (3) months ending June 30, 2020, to submit a valid Tax Compliance Certificate (TCC) and Police Record, following the renewal of their licences with the JCA for the period 2020-2021. This extension is only applicable for the renewal of applications, as new applications for all licences are subject to the normal requirements.

Ordinarily, documents such as the TCC and Police Record would be required upon renewal of licences. However, the JCA temporarily suspended these requirements in light of the COVID-19 crisis, which impacted the usual business operations of most organisations.


Applying for a Customs Broker Licence

Subject to the requirements of the Customs Regulations, the Customs Brokers Licensing Advisory Board (CBLAB) of the JCA is responsible for recommending the issuance of licences to Individual Applicants, Bodies Corporate and Unincorporated Associations, which undertake Customs broking functions in Jamaica.


Applying for an Individual Licence

Individuals applying for a Customs Broker licence must submit the following documents along with the prescribed application form to the CBLAB:

  • Provisional licence held for not less than a year, after receiving training, while being articled to a Licensed Customs Broker;
  • Typed cover letter in the applicant’s own handwriting, stating the basis of the application;
  • Two (2) passport sized photographs certified by a Justice of the Peace (J.P.);
  • Valid Tax Compliance Certificate (TCC);
  • Valid Police Record;
  • Two (2) character references, one of which should be from a J.P.;
  • Proof of residence (utility bill or confirmation letter from a J.P., etc);
  • Proof of age (Passport, Driver’s Licence or National ID);
  • Proof of educational qualification (Mathematics and English are mandatory, except where exemptions apply).


Applying for a Body Corporate Licence Application

Bodies Corporate must submit the following, along with the prescribed application form for such licences: 

  • Typed cover letter stating the basis of the application;
  • A certified copy of the Certificate of Incorporation;
  • Two (2) character references for each director, one of which should be from a J.P.;
  • Valid Police Records for each applicant;
  • Valid Tax Compliance Certificate (TCC);
  • One (1) passport sized photograph certified by a J.P. for each director;
  • A valid Tax Compliance Certificate (TCC) in the name of the Body Corporate;
  • Majority of the directors must provide:
    1. Proof of age (Passport,  Driver’s Licence or National ID);
    2. Proof of residence ((utility bill or confirmation  letter from a J.P., etc);
    3. Proof of educational qualification (Mathematics and English Language mandatory, except where exemptions are applicable).


Application for Unincorporated Association Licence

Unincorporated Associations must submit the following, along with the application form for such licences:

  • Typed cover letter, stating the basis of the application;
  • Each member should submit:
    • Two (2) certified passport size photographs;
    • Valid Tax Compliance Certificate;
    • Police Record;           
    • Two (2) character references, one of which should be from a J.P.;
    • Proof of residence (utility bill or Confirmation Letter from J.P., etc)
    • Proof of age (Passport Bio-page, Driver’s Licence or National ID);
    • Proof of educational qualification (Mathematics and English mandatory, except where exemptions may apply);
    • One member must be a Licence Customs Broker.



  • All applications must be submitted to the Office of the Director of Customs House Operations.
  • The witnessing of signed applications is no longer required by the JCA.
  • All applicants are required to sign a copy of the Code of Conduct prior to the issuing of the licence, and are also subject to a background check and to public notification.

The Agency remains fully committed to strengthening the partnership with the broker fraternity.





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Mission Statement
To facilitate trade, protect our borders, optimise revenue collection, through collaborative border management and delivery of high quality customer services and to develop and maintain a team of motivated professional and competent staff.


Jamaica Customs Agency

Customs House
Myers Wharf,
Newport East, Kingston 15
Phone: 876 922 5140-8 | 922 8770-3

Corporate Office
2-4 King Street, Kingston
Phone: 876 948 5151

Opening Hours
Monday - Thursday: 8:00am - 5:00pm
Friday: 8:00am - 4:00pm

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