24.5 C
Brunei
Wednesday, February 1, 2023
24.5 C
Brunei
Wednesday, February 1, 2023
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    Permit confusion over online shopping

    I have been an avid online shopper for over five years. The almost-monthly practice is to shop from a variety of American stores, have the items consolidated into one parcel by a forwarding company, and have it sent via courier service to my address here in Brunei.

    I had not encountered much of an issue with that mode of online purchasing until fairly recently.

    I was made to understand that the customs inspection process is more stringent now, yet my two most recent experiences are painting a different picture.

    I ordered a bag of cat kibble in March. It was held up at the customs as the item needed to have a special import permit from the agricultural authority.

    One look at the department’s leaflet and it was clearly stated that a permit is only required for items weighing over 11 kilogrammes. My cat kibble weighed 150 grammes. A quick call to the agency verified my suspicion, that a permit was unnecessary.

    The second incident involved a box of sweetener, which I had been ordering and consuming for close to two years.

    While previous orders were delivered without issues, this time around, I was told that I needed a permit from the foreign store.

    What was even more puzzling is that two months prior, I ordered the same item without the need of a permit.

    The only obvious difference between the two orders is that they were shipped using different courier companies. But why would the company be the reason for the requirement of a permit?

    I would like to know the cause of the inconsistency.

    Being meticulous in inspecting items coming in from overseas is laudable. However, when the rules are irregular, it may create a lot of misinformation.

    I hope the authorities could look into the matter.

    Stevia-Deprived

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