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Important changes to Customs and Excise Act Legislation

Important changes to customs and excise act legislation -  administrative penalty regime

Recent changes under the Customs and Excise Amendment Act 2012 have taken effect, extending the administrative penalties regime. A significant change to the regime is that GST errors are now liable.

Section 15 of the Customs and Excise Amendment Act 2012 has repealed and replaced section 128 in the existing Customs and Excise Act 1996 by substituting new sections 128 to 128D; and sections 16 and 17 have amended sections 129 and 130 respectively in the principal Act about penalty payment obligations and circumstances when no penalty is payable.

These provisions extend existing administrative penalty provisions and the scale of penalties that can be administered. There is now a graduated system of penalties ranging from $200 to $50,000 that can be imposed.

Customs is also formulating policy and procedures around the application of the new administrative penalty provisions.

For any enquiries about the new administrative penalty regime, call Customs on 0800 4 CUSTOMS (0800 428 786).


As part of the 2012 Budget, the Government announced further increases in excise and exciseequivalent duties on tobacco products.

There will be annual increases in the tobacco excise of 10 percent for the next four years, plus the annual indexation increase. These increases will take place on 1 January 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016.

A Bill was introduced into the House to amend the Customs and Excise Act 1996 to give effect to the annual 10 percent increases.

For further information,
please contact Customs on
0800 4 CUSTOMS (0800 428 786).