Goods originating outside OECS and/or CARICOM - Second Schedule

Member: 

Basic information

1

Outline of the system

The Import Licensing System is regulated by the External Trade Act Chapter 13.11 of the Revised Laws of Saint Lucia. The Ministry of Commerce administers the licensing system in relation to trade in goods.

2

Product coverage

The list of products subject to import licensing are contained in Schedule 2 attached to the External Trade (Restricted Imports) (Amendment) Order - Statutory Instrument No. 118 of 2012. Goods originating outside of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) and/or the Caribbean Common Market (CARICOM).

Nature of licensing

Automatic

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If Automatic, administrative purpose

Non-Automatic

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If Non-Automatic, description of the notified Non-Automatic Licensing regime

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Products under restriction as to the quantity or value of imports

The Saint Lucia Import Licensing Regime was adopted to facilitate the regulation and monitoring of imports. Automatic licenses are used for statistical purposes whereas non-automatic licenses are used the following purposes:
- National Security; - Public Health Concerns; - Public Safety; - Plant and Animal Health Concerns; - Development Factors; - Financial Needs; - Moral Issues.

To date, no other regulatory system has been contemplated.

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Questions for products under restriction as to the quantity or value of imports

7

The system applies to products originating from which country?

The system applies to goods originating outside of the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) and/or the Caribbean Common Market (CARICOM) - Second Schedule.

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Expected duration of licensing procedure

Eligibility of applicants

12

Is there a system of registration of persons or firms permitted to engage in importation?

13

What persons or firms are eligible to apply for a licence?

All persons, firms and institutions are eligible to apply for licences.

14

Is there a registration fee?

15

Is there a published list of authorized importers?

Contact point for information on eligibility

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Ministry/Authority

Ministry of Commerce

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Address

Heraldine Rock Building Castries, St.Lucia

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Telephone

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Fax

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E-mail address

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Website

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Contact officer

Submission of an application

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Administrative body(ies) for submission of an application

Ministry of Commerce

Documentation requirements

24

What information is required in applications?

A sample of the application form is attached for reference.

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What documents is the importer required to supply with the application?

A copy of the relative commercial or proforma invoice is required with each application.

Window of submission of an application

26

How far in advance of importation must application for a licence be made?

Importers are asked to submit applications prior to arrival of goods. Licences are on most occasions processed within 48 hours of receipt by the Ministry of Commerce.

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Are there any limitations as to the period of the year during which application for licence can be made? If so, explain

There are no limitations as to the period of the year during which applications for licence and/or importation may be made.

Issuing the license

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Can a licence be granted immediately on request?

In special circumstances a licence can be granted on request.

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Can licences be obtained within a shorter time-limit or for goods arriving at the port without a licence

Licences can be obtained over a shorter period for goods already on the docks.

30

Which administrative body is responsible for approving application of licences?

Licences related to the External Trade Act are all processed by the Ministry of Commerce.

31

Must the applications be passed on to other organs for visa, note or approval?

In effect, an importer would have to interface with at least two Government departments before obtaining clearance. However plans to limit the involvement of multiple administrative bodies in the final approval of those import licenses are at an advance stage.

32

Are there any other conditions attached to the issue of a licence?

There are no conditions attached to the issuance of a licence. Licenses are issued at no cost to the applicant.

Fees and other administrative charges

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Is there any licensing fee or administrative charge?

No licensing or administrative fees are charged.

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What is the amount of the fee or charge?

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Is there any deposit or advance payment required associated with the issue of licences?

There is no deposit or advance payment requirement associated with the issuance of licences.

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Amount or rate?

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Is it refundable?

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What is the period of retention?

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What is the purpose of this requirement?

Refusal of an application

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Under what circumstances may an application for a licence be refused other than failure to meet the ordinary criteria?

All applications are approved automatically except for those that fail to meet the normal criteria.

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Are the reasons for any refusal given to applicants?

Applicants are informed of the reason for refusal.

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Have applicants a right of appeal in the event of refusal to issue a licence?

Yes applicants have a right of appeal.

43

If so, to what bodies and under what procedures?

Applications may appeal to the Permanent Secretary or directly to the Minister of Commerce. Applicants may seek representation through one of the following:
- St. Lucia Manufacturers Association;
- St. Lucia Small Business Association;
- St. Lucia Chamber of Commerce.
Applicants may also seek redress through the Civil Court, and ultimately through the Caribbean
Court of Justice (CCJ) if the infringement is in contravention of the Revised Treaty of
Chaguaramus, which presents the rules governing the CARICOM Single Market and Economy,
CSME.

Importation

44

Are there any limitations as to the period of year during which importation may be made?

There are no limitations as to the period of the year during which applications for licence and/or importation may be made.

45

What documents are required upon actual importation?

In the case of goods originating out of the CARICOM, a Certificate of Origin is required.

46

Are there any other administrative procedures, apart from import licensing and similar administrative procedures, required prior to importation?

There are no other administrative procedures apart from import licensing required prior to importation.

Conditions of licensing

47

What is the period of validity of a licence? Can the validity be extended? How?

A licence is valid for one month from date of issue. The validity may be extended to facilitate the delivery of goods, if required.

48

Is there any penalty for the non-utilization of a licence or a portion of a licence?

There is no penalty for the non-utilization of a licence or a portion of it.

49

Are licences transferable between importers? If so, are any limitations or conditions attached to such transfer?

Licences are non-transferable.

Foreign Exchange

50

Is foreign exchange automatically provided by the banking authorities for goods to be imported?

Foreign Exchange is automatically provided by the banking authorities to pay for imported goods.

51

Is a licence required as a condition to obtaining foreign exchange?

There are no domestic restrictions to obtain foreign exchange to settle invoices, whether payable at sight or on other trade terms.

52

Is foreign exchange always available to cover licences issued?

53

What formalities must be fulfilled for obtaining the foreign exchange?