Customs implementing US$4-m system to speed up operations at ports

Friday, August 15, 2014

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KINGSTON, Jamaica--Jamaica Customs Agency has launched a major, technology-driven system, aimed at streamlining and reducing the processes involved the import, export, and trans-shipment of goods.
The Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA), which is being implemented at a cost of US$4 million, is expected to speed up operations at the ports by fully automating export and import transactions. It allows for real-time updates on new tax regulations to minimise errors and delays in the computation of port taxes and also guarantees transparency, uniformity/standardisation and consistency of Customs procedures.
It is expected to significantly reduce the cost of importation and doing business, to local and foreign investors.
Speaking at the launch at the Jamaica Pegasus in New Kingston on Wednesday (August 13), Finance and Planning Minister, Dr Peter Phillips, welcomed the system, noting that “the country needs the additional revenues which can flow from this”.
He said that the application of the computerised platform in other jurisdictions, have realised a 10 to 20 per cent increase in revenues through improved compliance and shorter processing times.
The Minister stated that “smoothing out and speeding up the processing time in Customs is essential to raising the overall productivity of the country in today’s modern, global environment”.
This is important, he said, in light of the fact that manufacturers often do not produce a complete item, and need to import and export multiple times before achieving the final product.

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