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Circular No. 17/ 98-Cus.
dated 16/3/98
F.No. 305/55/98-FTT
Government of India
Ministry of Finance
Department of Revenue
Central Board of Excise & Customs, New Delhi
Subject :    Clearing of Laptop computers and Video Projection System from EHTP/ STP and EPZ Unit - Regarding.

        It has been brought to the notice of the Board that units engaged in development of software for exports have at times to take out imported Laptop computers and Video Projection System (VPS) outside the unit / Park/ EPZ for working on the software by the engineers employed with them. It has been reported that the present restrictions do not enable them to make full use of the potential for developing software. The matter has been examined in the Board.

2.    As you are aware notification Nos. 95/93-Cus and 96/93-Cus both dated 2.3.1993, 138/ 91-Cus & 140/91-Cus both dated 20.10.1991 and notification No. 133/ 94-Cus dated 22.6.1994 regulate the imports of such units. condition No. 6(ii) of notification No. 133/94-Cus, No. 10 of notification No. 138 & 140 of 1991 and condition No. 11 of notification No. 95 & 96 of 1993-Cus. permits the importer to take out the imported goods from the units with the approval of the Commissioner/ Assistant Commissioner of Customs temporarily for repairs or display as the case may be. Having regard to these provisions and the fact that Software Unit/ Hardware Units have to be provided freedom to use Laptop computers to their maximum advantage, it has been decided by the Board that the duty free Laptop computers and V.P.S. imported by such units may be allowed to be taken outside the bonded area for working upon by the employee engineers subject to the following conditions;

    (i)    The STP/ EHTP units would issue a certificate valid for a month at a time authorising the employee engineer by name and giving the full description of the Laptop computers and V.P.S. authorised to be carried by him out side the bonded area indicating the marks and numbers of the computer, the name of its manufacturer and the year of its manufacture.

    (ii)    The concerned units would maintain a record of the letters of authorisation issued in terms (i) above and the taking out and bringing in of the laptop computer/ V.P.S. in the unit. This record shall be available for inspection at any point of time by the jurisdictional Assistant Commissioner of Customs and Central Excise.

    (iii)    The facility of removal of Laptop computer and V.P.S. will be available only for taking it outside temporarily and these will be available only for taking it outside temporarily and these will have to be brought back to the unit and duly accounted for.

    (iv)    A general permission by the Assistant Commissioner of Customs, wherever requested may be given for a period of 6 months at a time of temporarily take out and bring in Laptop computer and V.P.S. or specified description by specified employee engineer during that period.

3.    You are requested to permit Laptop computers and V.P.S. for temporary use out side bonded area of STP/ EHTP units or EPZ units as the case may be for development of software and display subject to the conditions mentioned above. You are also requested to inform the concerned Development Commissioners/ Directors of STP/EHTP units of the above facility. Please ensure that the units are not required to approach every time the same Laptop computer and V.P.S. are being taken out by the same authorised person and wherever requested for general permissions for a specific period are given as a normal course.
(O.P. Khanduja)
Sr. Technical Officer (FTT)