Jordan Customs Department
The early twenties of the last century have witnessed the establishment of Trans-Jordan Emirate. Thus, there was a need to establish a governmental agency to control the movement of goods and commodities imported into the Emirate, as well as goods transiting through its territories due to the location of the Emirate at the heart of the Arab World, as well as its strategic importance at both the regional and international levels, Therefore, the first Customs administration – that was then known as Directorate of General Excise and Statistics- was officially inaugurated in parallel to the establishment of Trans-Jordan Emirate in 1921. It was administratively related to the Council of Advisors, (currently, the Prime Ministry) during the period 1921-1925. Initially, it took up the task of statistics and inspection as well as collecting revenues levied on imported goods. Afterwards, it was structured under Finance Principal (Minister of finance) and later called Directorate of Customs and Excise. During 1928-1935, Jordan customs was disengaged from Finance Principal and linked directly with the Council of Ministers. During 1953-1951, the Department was coupled with Ministry of Trade and Industry as it was called then Ministry of Trade/ Customs. Between1956-1983, the Department was re-linked with Ministry of Finance and named Ministry of Finance/ Customs. As of 1983, the Department has been called General Customs Department headed by a Director General who reports directly to Minister of Finance. Since then, twenty Director Generals have alternated this post.
Since its establishment, several Customs houses have been created. Allenby Bridge Customs Center (currently known as King Hussein Bridge) which is located on Jordan River was established in 1930 to facilitate the movement of goods to and from Palestine. Additionally, Al-Ramtha Customs center - on the Jordan-Syria borders and Amman Customs center, which was located in Ain Ghazal area, were established. During the period 1931- 1938, several Customs centers such as Sheikh Hussein Bridge (currently, Jordan Valley crossing), Al-Jfour ( currently, Al-Karama) and Ma'an were also established. As well, post office Customs centers were set up in Amman, Irbid and Zarqa. Following this, was the establishment of Aqaba Customs Center in 1944. The number of Customs houses in operation currently amounts to (33) houses, major and minor, in addition to (2) existing Customs laboratories in Amman and Aqaba.
Regarding legislations, the first law was issued in 1926 to regulate Customs work. It was called Customs and excise law, which was then amended several times to line up with the local and international developments and transformations In 1962, law No. (1) was issues and remained in force until the issuance of customs Provisional Law No (20) and its amendments for 1998. As for Customs Tariff systems, the firs tariff which comprised exchanged goods lists and levied duty rates was issued in 1936, and was later amended several times during 1957, 1962. The last of which was the WCO's Harmonized System which the department commenced applying in 1994.
The Department’s tasks and responsibilities have broadened to encompass active contribution to national economy support, investment promotion, trade facilitation, combating smuggling and protecting the local community and environment from hazardous materials, as well as controlling cross-border movements of passengers, goods and transportations passing through the kingdom. Therefore, the department has been adopting up-to-date technologies to further enhance and serve Customs work, and realize the concept of e-government. As a result of applying such approach, JC has now secured its position among the best worldwide Customs administrations that provide all stakeholders with high-quality services.
"Jordan ranks globally among the best twenty countries for security and facilitation of cross-border trade".
"Create a fair competitive environment for business, contribute to boosting the competitiveness of the national economy; while partaking in ensuring safety and security of the community by providing stakeholders with distinguished customs services, in line with the international best practices, and in effective cooperation and coordination with all partners.
Develop a prosperous Jordanian Economy that is open to regional and international markets.
Reinforce the government administration toward s becoming financially stable, transparent and accountable.
Provide the Treasury with local revenues.
Increase customs revenues
Increase the satisfaction of the Department’s partners and stakeholders
Increase the local community initiatives
Increase the effectiveness of Anti-smuggling operations and curtail illicit trade activities
Increase seizures of hazardous materials and environmentally harmful goods
Reduce time release of goods