19 U.S.C. § 1555 - Bonded warehouses

Cite as19 U.S.C. § 1555

(a) Designation; preconditions; bonding requirements; supervision

Subject to subsection (b), buildings or parts of buildings and other enclosures may be designated by the Secretary of the Treasury as bonded warehouses for the storage of imported merchandise entered for warehousing, or taken possession of by the appropriate customs officer, or under seizure, or for the manufacture of merchandise in bond, or for the repacking, sorting, or cleaning of imported merchandise. Such warehouses may be bonded for the storing of such merchandise only as shall belong or be consigned to the owners or proprietors thereof and be known as private bonded warehouses, or for the storage of imported merchandise generally and be known as public bonded warehouses. Before any imported merchandise not finally released from customs custody shall be stored in any such premises, the owner or lessee thereof shall give a bond in such sum and with such sureties as may be approved by the Secretary of the Treasury to secure the Government against any loss or expense connected with or arising from the deposit, storage, or manipulation of merchandise in such warehouse. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, bonded warehouses shall be used solely for the storage of imported merchandise and shall be placed in charge of a proper officer of the customs, who, together with the proprietor thereof, shall have joint custody of all merchandise stored in the warehouse; and all labor on the merchandise so stored shall be performed by the owner or proprietor of the warehouse, under supervision of the officer of the customs in charge of the same, at the expense of the owner or proprietor. The compensation of such officer of the customs and other customs employees appointed to supervise the receipt of merchandise into any such warehouse and deliveries therefrom shall be reimbursed to the Government by the proprietor of such warehouse.

(b) Duty-free sales enterprises

(1) Duty-free sales enterprises may sell and deliver for export from the customs territory duty-free merchandise in accordance with this subsection and such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe to carry out this subsection.

(2) A duty-free sales enterprise may be located anywhere within-

(A) the same port of entry, as established under section 1 of the Act of August 24, 1912 (37 Stat. 434), from which a purchaser of duty-free merchandise departs the customs territory; or

(B) 25 statute miles from the exit point through which the purchaser of duty-free merchandise will depart the customs territory; or

(C) a port of entry, as established under section 1 of the Act of August 24, 1912 (37 Stat. 434), or within 25 statute miles of a staffed port of entry if reasonable assurance can be provided that duty-free merchandise sold by the enterprise will be exported by individuals departing from the customs territory through an international airport located within the customs territory.

(3) Each duty-free sales enterprise-

(A) shall establish procedures to provide reasonable assurance that duty-free merchandise sold by the enterprise will be exported from the customs territory;

(B) if the duty-free sales enterprise is an airport store, shall establish and enforce, in accordance with such regulations as the Secretary may prescribe, restrictions on the sale of duty-free merchandise to any one individual to personal use quantities;

(C) shall display in prominent places within its place of business notices which state clearly that any duty-free merchandise purchased from the enterprise-

(i) has not been subject to any Federal duty or tax,

(ii) if brought back into the customs territory, must be declared and is subject to Federal duty and tax, and

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