Check out your forwarder’s credentials before sending that balikbayan box home.
This was the warning to Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and other Filipinos abroad from the Bureau of Customs (BOC) after 1,000 out of 2,000 abandoned boxes were finally delivered to their rightful consignees following the discovery that the offices of the cargo’s United States-based forwarder had closed down.
Customs Commissioner Nicanor Faeldon said the freight forwarder, RDR Forwarding, had shut down its operations in the US, initially leaving its customers in a quandary as to how the boxes could reach them after they had already paid for the service.
Faeldon, however, clarified yesterday that the boxes are no longer with the BOC but have been sent to Online Pinoy Padala (OPP) which is in charge of delivering the shipment to the consignees.
The customs chief advised OFWs and other Filipinos abroad to be more careful in sending balikbayan boxes by verifying first whether they are transacting with legitimate and accredited freight forwarders
He also directed BOC personnel to coordinate with the Department of Trade and Industry, the government agency that accredits cargo forwarders, to avoid similar problems from occurring in the future.
OPP claimed that around 2,000 balikbayan boxes were abandoned by RDR Forwarding following its closure and failure to settle customs duties and taxes.
So far, around 1,000 boxes have already been delivered by OPP to the forwarder’s customers. #