The move was prompted by a Court of Appeals ruling favoring international carriers, through the Board of Airline Representatives, that they are not bound to shoulder the overtime pay of Customs agents.
The ruling in effect passes on to passengers the responsibility of assuming this financial obligation.
Customs Commissioner Angelito Alvarez said an additional cost of $1 to $2 may be imposed to finance the allowances and overtime pay of Customs agents.
“The additional $1 to $2 would either be incorporated in the terminal fee or would be paid as a separate account in the airport,” he said.
He said that Customs personnel have not received such monetary benefits since July last year.
This non-payment of overtime pay had Customs agents refusing to render work beyond the prescribed eight-hour period.
The CA ruling also obliged the Bureau of Customs (BoC) to draft a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that the passengers at the airport such as the OFWs, for instance, would have to shoulder the cost.
However, representatives of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), and the Bureau of Customs, Immigration and Quarantine, among others, have yet to approved the agreement.
For the meantime, Alvarez said the agency has secured airlines' commitment to pay at least five months’ worth of overtime pay and allowances in exchange for the services of Customs employees until the yearend.
The proposed MoU came after the Customs agents threatened to refuse working beyond the working hours last week.
The BoC is looking at implementing the measure amid the government's limited room to take on additional cost. The Aquino administration is aiming to contain its budget deficit within the P325-billion ceiling.
Passengers departing for other countries are each charged a terminal fee of P750 as well as travel tax of P1,650.