PH ranks 2nd in UN survey for digital trade facilitation

QUEZON CITY (PIA) — The Bureau of Customs (BOC), under the stewardship of Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno, has been credited for the country’s impressive climb to the second spot among Southeast Asian nations in the 2023 United Nations Global Survey on Digital and Sustainable Trade Facilitation.

The UN Survey, encompassing over 160 economies globally, highlighted the Philippines’ advancement by incorporating 60 digital and sustainable trade facilitation measures. This progress has substantially minimized trading time and costs across borders.

Scoring 87.10 percent, the Philippines surged from its third-place standing in 2021, showcasing commendable strides in modernizing customs administration.

This impressive achievement underscores Commissioner Bienvenido Rubio and his team’s relentless commitment to transforming the BOC into a world-class customs agency. The BOC has never been as sophisticated and modern as before because of new initiatives under the Marcos, Jr. administration,” Secretary Diokno said.

The BOC’s digitalization efforts have seen 160 out of 166 customs processes undergo digital transformation, achieving an outstanding 96.39-percent digitalization rate. Notably, multiple systems have been developed and launched for improved customs services.

Recently unveiled on November 21, 2023, the e-Travel System introduced within the eGoV application streamlines baggage declaration submissions for passengers and crew members, aiming to optimize border control, bolster health surveillance, and facilitate economic data analysis. This collaborative project involved multiple government agencies like the Bureau of Immigration, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, Anti-Money Laundering Council, and the Department of Information and Communications Technology.

Moreover, the BOC’s Automated Export Declaration System (AEDS) and Customs Auction Monitoring System (e-Auction System) are poised for implementation, set to enhance electronic submission processes for exporters and enable efficient online auction management.

Further, ongoing development initiatives encompass the e-Service Catalog System, Document Management System (DMS), and Over Staying Container Tracking System (OSTracker), aimed at streamlining services, document management, and port disposition activities, respectively.

In tandem with modernization endeavors, the BOC has fortified collaborations with various agencies to bolster trade facilitation. Memorable partnerships include initiatives with the Philippine Postal Corporation, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, Philippine Economic Zone Authority, Department of Trade and Industry-Strategic Trade Management Office, and the Association of International Shipping Lines, all aimed at enhancing efficiency, preventing smuggling, and promoting secure trade.

Additionally, through Customs Memorandum Order (CMO) No. 12-2023, the BOC issued guidelines for obtaining preferential tariff treatment under the newly implemented Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement.

The implementation of the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) Program has seen progress, with three Level 1 Accredited AEO Members, showcasing the BOC’s commitment to facilitating secure trade partnerships. Furthermore, signing Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRAs) with China and ASEAN member states underlines the alignment of certification standards with global customs norms.

Looking ahead, the BOC aims to further expand its MRAs by negotiating with the Customs Administrations of Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, and the Republic of Korea, emphasizing continued commitment to international trade facilitation and security. (PIA-NCR)

In other News
Skip to content