NBR launches “Digital Stamps” scheme for cigarette products

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Manama, Apr. 12 (BNA): The National Bureau for Revenue’s (NBR) has launched the “Digital Stamps” Scheme in Bahrain as part of its commitment to ensure the effective implementation of Excise,

This scheme aims to track excise goods from the manufacturing stage up to the point of consumption through digital stamps, NBR said.

These stamps contain security features and codes that serve to protect consumers against counterfeit and illicit trade.

The “Digital Stamps” Scheme operates by scanning the stamp placed on excise goods at entry points to Bahrain to ensure their authenticity.

It will protect consumers against the circulation of counterfeit or illegal goods, while enabling them to identify product details and will limit attempts to smuggle excise goods into the Kingdom and ensure the effectiveness of government revenue collection.

The scheme will be applied through a phasic approach to tobacco products.

The implementation will take place in collaboration with Customs Affairs at the Ministry of Interior, in addition to the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism and the Ministry of Health, to ensure a seamless application.

NBR said that the registration for the Digital Stamps Scheme is required by the Excise payers who import tobacco products and their relevant supply chain organisations from production until the release of the products to the local market in Bahrain.

The first stage of the Digital Stamp scheme will focus on cigarette products. There are three phases of implementation of the scheme in this stage. The first phase started with receiving Digital Stamp orders as of March 11, 2022, from Excise payers registered with the NBR.

The second phase includes the implementation of the scheme on all imported products through customs clearance, where all imported cigarette products that arrive in the Kingdom must have a digital stamp placed.

The final stage will involve implementation in local markets, where no cigarette product can be traded without a digital stamp.

In this phase, any cigarette product that does not have a digital stamp will be returned through the relevant supply chain to be destroyed or moved for sale outside the territories of Bahrain.

The NBR held two virtual introductory workshops as part of its commitment to raise stakeholders’ readiness and awareness to ensure the successful implementation of the scheme in its various stages,

 The workshops were attended by cigarette importers and manufacturers and were held in cooperation with “De La Rue”, a leading corporation in the Digital Stamp industry worldwide.

Further information about the Digital Stamps Scheme is available via the call center on 80008001 available 24 hours, 7 days a week, or email through ds@nbr.gov.bh, in addition to visiting NBR’s website (www.nbr.gov.bh), Instagram, Twitter and YouTube channels (@BahrainNBR).