Customs gears up to join the Asean Single Window
Mary Grace Padin (The Philippine Star) - July 20, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Bureau of Customs (BOC) is undertaking several reforms to improve its processes and operations in preparation for the country’s participation in the ASEAN Single Window (ASW) this year, according to a top official.

During the 48th meeting of the ASW Technical Working Group in Manila, Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero said the BOC is implementing measures to automate its processes, enhance cargo clearance examination, and strengthen its capabilities in intelligence and enforcement to prepare the Philippines in its plan to join the ASW’s live operations.

“The enhancements required to resolve the end-to-end testing issues are about to be completed. Domestic preparations to meet the targets are also being done by BOC together with other agencies,” Guerrero said.

He said the BOC is also simultaneously coordinating with the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health to facilitate the exchange of cross-border electronic trade documents using the ASW.

Guerrero said the BOC has also prepared an action plan to prepare the country for its participation in the ASW.

“All these we will strive to put into action and we welcome all support and assistance for us to achieve our objective to be at par with our fellow member-states who are now part of or are ready to join the ASW live operation,” Guerrero added.

The ASW is a regional initiative which aims to enable the cross-border electronic exchange of customs documents among the ASEAN’s 10 member-states.

The country’s connection to ASW will be made through the TradeNet, which was developed and established by the Department of Finance’s Inter-Agency Business Process Interoperability (IABPI) and Department of Information and Communication Technology.

TradeNet is the online portal where the automated licensing, permit, clearance and certification systems of trade regulatory government agencies are integrated.

The platform is seen to minimize the cost of doing business and cut the processing time for the issuance of import and export permits.

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