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What’s New?

Registration, Licensing and Accreditation (RLA), which is part of the New Customs Acts Programme (NCAP), is the new electronic platform for the management of registration/licensing applications. The new electronic registration/licensing process is being implemented under the provisions of the Customs and Excise Act, no 64 of 1964. This will allow for easier transition into the Customs Control and Duty Acts of 2014 (date of implementation still to be determined).

Release 1 of RLA, which took place in April 2020, included 45 client types (predominantly Importers and Exporters) who are able to submit NEW applications for registration/licensing/reporting via eFiling.  The impacted client types are also able to have applications captured by Customs staff at their preferred Customs branch. 

When is the implementation?

The introduction of eFiling as a new registration channel for the 45 client types mentioned above went live on 20 April 2020.  The same client types are also able to submit via the new system at Customs branches. (For a full list of Customs offices, click here.) An additional 28 client types will be added to RLA when the next phase goes live towards the end of April 2021. During the course of 2021, further client types will be enabled to submit via the RLA platform.

Who is impacted and what steps must I take?

For a full list of all client types who are able to submit new applications via eFiling using the RLA system, click here.

Client types that are not impacted will continue to submit their applications for registration/licensing/reporting according to the current process at Customs branches.

Existing Customs clients can therefore continue trading and will not be affected. Only new client type applications (for the RLA-enabled client types) will be processed on the new system until further notice.

The first category of existing clients who will be requested to migrate to the new system are Clearing Agents. This is to allow Clearing Agents to register relationships with their clients on the Relationship Management component on RLA. More information on this will be available in due course. All other existing clients will be notified when they should migrate to the new system.


  • If clients are experiencing challenges in accessing the RLA system on eFiling or submitting a case, please call the SARS Contact Centre on 0800 00 7277.
  • Clients who cannot get to a Customs office (particularly due to Covid-19 regulations) can submit applications via the following branch email addresses:
  • For queries on applications already submitted, you can email the following addresses. However, do not send applications (DA185s) to the email addresses below as they do not capture applications:

    • For applications submitted via the RLA system and the case has passed the acceptable turnaround time, please email [email protected] with the case number and name of the company in the subject line. These are cases starting with the 1000 number.

    • For applications submitted via the manual DA185 form and the case has passed the acceptable turnaround time, please email [email protected] with the case number and name of company in the subject line. These are for cases starting with the 3 number.

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