Archive for August 2019


BMSB Update - access the latest updates


Who does this notice affect?

Customs Brokers, freight forwarders, importers and master consolidators


BMSB Update - access the latest updates


Freight & Trade Alliance (FTA) has received advice from the Department of Agriculture that they have published a new web page under the Brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) web page titled "Preparing to import goods during the 2019-20 BMSB season"

The BMSB pages are continually being updated with new offshore treatment providers as well as new information with regards to issues / guidelines / requirements  surrounding the season that will start on Sunday September 1st.

Members can easily view the latest updates by (1) entering BMSB in the search bar on the home page

then (2) modifying the search range for the latest updates on the rhs of the results page

Accessing this page and sourcing the latest updates may save you the time sending off an email to various mailboxes at the Department and waiting for a reply.

Some of the updates we have noticed are as follows

128-2019 - Treatment requirements for the 2019-20 Brown marm…

2019-20 Brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) season lodgement

Offshore BMSB treatment providers scheme

You may also wish to review the latest issue of Biosecurity Matters 

John Park – FTA 

... read more

BMSB update - Offshore Treatment Provider scheme


Who does this notice affect?

Importers, freight forwarders and customs brokers


BMSB update - Offshore Treatment Provider scheme


Freight & Trade Alliance (FTA) again liaised last week with the Department of Agriculture on Brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) - summary below:

  • Treatment providers are responsible for registering and applying to be part of the offshore treatment providers scheme.  We understand that the process is relatively straight forward for existing treatment providers. The department wrote to all existing providers almost two months ago and since then has sent reminders to all yet to re-apply. We again recommend that members continue to contact and encourage treatment providers to register and apply;
  • The department is processing renewals and new applications very quickly, provided the applicant submits their application with the required information.  There is no backlog of complete applications awaiting approval;
  • Treatment providers located in non target risk countries are strongly encouraged to renew and/or to register if not previously approved. Treatment certificates from providers in non target risk countries will be accepted by the department  whether they are registered or not.  For those providers not registered the department undertakes additional assessment and verification of the treatment certificates to maintain confidence in them;
  • The list of treatment providers on the department's web site is being updated on a regular basis.
  • All the information/forms on the offshore treatment scheme is on the department web site at  There is a dedicated departmental email inbox for off shore providers to send their applications/ any questions at

Andrew Crawford - FTA / APSA


... read more

NNF 2019/202 - Customs Broker Verification of an Importer's Identity

Customs Broker Verification of an Importer's Identity

The United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is publishing a proposed rule to require customs brokers to collect certain information from importers to enable the brokers to verify the identity of importers, including non-resident importers

This rule proposes to amend the U.S. CBP regulations to require customs brokers to collect certain information from importers to enable the customs brokers to verify the identity of importers, including non-resident importers. CBP proposes these amendments, pursuant to section 116 of the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015 (TFTEA), which directs CBP to promulgate regulations to require brokers to verify the identity of the importers who are their clients. 

For more information refer to an article published by American Shipper.

It will be interesting to see if our border agency Department of Home Affairs, Australian Border Force will take interest in this development.


Kind regards,

Zoran Kostadinoski
Head of Border and Biosecurity
Regional Manager VIC | TAS |SA, CBFCA


... read more

Biosecurity Import Levy - deferred implementation

Biosecurity Import Levy - deferred implementation


Further to our commentary from Tuesday 6 August 2019 titled Will common sense prevail on the Biosecurity Import Levy, Freight & Trade Alliance (FTA) has today received confirmation that the 1 September 2019 implementation for the Biosecurity Import Levy is unachievable -  of ongoing concern is that the revised implementation timeframe, quantum and collection mechanism(s) remain unknown.
Since 1996/97, our border and biosecurity agencies have been extremely efficient at collecting taxes, levies and import processing charges via the entry / Full Import Declaration – why on earth the government would even consider a deviation from this collection mechanism is staggering.
A disastrous result for importers would be to wear the cascading costs of administrative fees through the supply chain should the government revert back to its original models (or a hybrid model collecting some revenue from the FID) by collecting the Biosecurity Import Levy from stevedores and / or shipping lines.
This entire management of the levy over the last 16 months has been an example of deplorable public administration - stay tuned for the next chapter in this ongoing saga.
Paul Zalai – FTA / APSA

... read more

NNF 2019/194 - Import Industry Advice Notices Note Re BMSB contact details 128-2019

Import Industry Advice Notices - NNF 2019/194 - Import Industry Advice Notices  Note Re BMSB contact details   128-2019

 Just in case you are not subscribed to the Department of Agriculture Import Industry Advice Notices, reef to below recently published notices that may be of interest to you and your clients.

125-2019 - Reminder: Import permits required to import cut flowers and foliage from Kenya, Colombia and Ecuador from 1 September 2019

127-2019 - eCert for Imports: sanitary certificates from New Zealand goes live

128-2019 - Treatment requirements for the 2019-20 Brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) risk season

129-2019 - The department is implementing a number of new fresh produce commodities onto the Compliance Based Intervention Scheme (CBIS)



... read more

Will common sense prevail on the Biosecurity Import Levy?



Who does this notice affect?

Importers, freight forwarders, customs brokers, stevedores, shipping lines, airlines, express couriers, e-commerce providers and Cargo Terminal Operators


Biosecurity Import Levy


Freight & Trade Alliance (FTA) and Australian Peak Shippers Association (APSA) members have understandably been seeking updates on the proposed Biosecurity Import Levy.

The concern from members and the wider industry is that depending on how the new levy is to be collected and passed on through the supply chain, adequate notice is required to allow industry participants to implement systems and to have discussions with customers about potential cost increases.

While we are unfortunately not in a position to provide definitive answers, we trust that the following provides useful background and the current status of this new levy.




As members will recall, the Biosecurity Import Levy was announced in the 2018 Federal Budget with an aim to collect $325M over 3 years from a commencement date of 1 July 2019.
Since that time there has been significant controversy surrounding the implementation of the levy, ultimately leading to the former Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources announcing the formation of the Biosecurity Levy Steering Committee tasked with recommending the possible scope and design for a levy.

As outlined in previous member notices, I was privileged to be appointed by the Minister to participate with eight other industry representatives in the committee led by an independent chair (Mr David Trebeck) and supported by Pegasus Economics.

To allow the steering committee adequate time to report and as outlined in the last Federal Budget, the government announced a new proposed date of 1 September 2019 and a relatively small loss of revenue associated with this deferred commencement.


... read more

NNF 2019/189 - ABF Asbestos Position

NNF 2019/189 - ABF Asbestos Position


At the recent bilateral meeting in Canberra with the Australian Border Force (ABF), the CBFCA raised concern about what level of evidence is required from importers relative to their declaration responsibilities towards goods containing asbestos.

CBFCA suggested a signed statement from the importer should be acceptable and should extinguish any broker liability around the provision of false or misleading information.

Below is the ABF response on this issue raised.

  • The ABF undertakes a holistic assessment where due diligence and reasonable process applies.
  • The ABF does not publicly disclose information on profiled goods.
  • The ABF website asbestos information page clearly lists recommended measures that the owners of goods can undertake to address the risk of asbestos in imported goods.
  • Notice 2017/21 clearly articulates the obligations of the goods’ owner, as well as Brokers, with respect to Assurances that imported goods do not contain asbestos.
  • Brokers are advised to regularly familiarise themselves with the asbestos information page and 2017/21 Notice to assist with ensuring their clientele’s compliance with the asbestos border control. The asbestos information page is updated from time to time.




... read more