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Establishing 100 percent online submission advocated:

Thirteen recommendations to enhance trade facilitation

Jonathan Koh of CrimsonLogic, Singapore said the number of days for export should be reduced by half from the current 21 days to achieve excellence in international trade. Paper submission and the administration burden should be reduced, red tape should be checked and trade facilitation enhanced, he said.

From left: Advisor (Trade) Special Advisory Services Division Commonwealth Secretariat, Sujeevan Perera, President, FCCISL, Kosala Wickramanayake, Secretary, Ministry of Export Development and International Trade, S.Rannuge, CrimsonLogic, Singapore. Jonathan Koh and Chairman, International Chamber of Commerce Tissa Jayaweera at a discussion. Picture by Sumanachandra Ariyawansa

He was speaking on “International Trade Facilitation Findings from Sri Lanka” at the International Conference on Benchmarking Sri Lanka’s Trade Facilitation at the Cinnamon Grand Hotel yesterday.

Koh submitted 13 recommendations which should be implemented in three stages as short, medium and long term from one to three years and beyond. The cost for the implementation of the program is USD 26.63 million, he said.

Koh recommended the setting up of a Presidential Commission Government -Business trade facilitation Committee as a short term measure and added that the effort on this issue is low.

Establishing 100 percent online admission of CUSDEC, extending the entry receiving time beyond 3 p.m and the standardization of tariff classification were the other short term recommendations.

He said that all customs related information should be readily available for those interested. The other recommendations included establishing pre-arrival manifest submission, reviewing the licensing procedures, conducting a study for a Public Private Partnership model for trade facilitation system, Online application and approval of OGA Licence and permit and establish a port community system.

Koh also outlined three recommendations that had gained high effort - eliminating duplication of sampling by customs, establishing a national value added network framework and implementation of a single electronic window.

Koh said that Sri Lanka is closer to the top half of various trade rankings compared with other countries and these recommendations can be implemented without any hassle. There may be resistance but people expect corruption to be eliminated, improve coordination, online submission and timely dissemination of rules and regulations.

Advisor (Trade) Special Advisory Services Division, Commonwealth Secretariat Sujeevan Perera said the overall goal of Sri Lanka’s Trade Facilitation project is to enhance the competitiveness of Sri Lanka’s business environment through improvements to its trade facilitation systems and processes.

The international conference on Benchmarking Sri Lanka’s Trade Facilitation Systems marked the final event in the exercise of examining and analyzing the needs in the systems and methods of trade facilitation.

It was organized by the Federation of Chamber of Commerce and sponsored by the Commonwealth Secretariat

Secretary, Ministry of Export Development and International Trade S. Rannuge also spoke.

 

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