Gov’t to debut online trade platform in Dec
The government is rolling out in December a new online trade facilitation platform meant to cut down processing time for shipment permits, according to the Department of Finance.
According to Finance Undersecretary Gil Beltran, the platform dubbed TradeNet.gov.ph will initially cover rice and six other commonly traded goods that represent half of the Philippines’ total trade volume.
Beltran said the platform would also function as the Philippines’ National Single Window (NSW) system, which will allow traders to use the system to apply for import and export permits for rice; sugar; used motor vehicles; chemicals such as toluene; frozen meat; medicines for humans, animals or fish; and cured tobacco.
The NSW will be interconnected also by December to the Asean (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Single Window, a regional initiative intended to help speed up cargo clearances and promote economic integration by enabling the electronic exchange of border documents among the 10 member-states.
Asean groups the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam.
“The initial deployment will allow traders to use the system for the first seven commodities that represent fifty percent of the total trade volume of the Philippines,” Beltran said in a report to Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III.
Beltran said 16 agencies involved in the processing of permits for the import and export of these first seven commodities would have to be connected online to TradeNet by December.
These include the Bureau of Animal Industry, National Tobacco Administration, Fair Trade and Enforcement Bureau, National Food Authority, Bureau of Plant Industry, Food and Drugs Administration, National Meat Inspection Service, Bureau of Internal Revenue, and Bureau of Customs.
Beltran added that other goods would also be progressively placed onboard the TradeNet as other regulatory agencies involved in trade facilitation get engaged in the system.
He said that, as the vehicle for the NSW, TradeNet was expected “to shorten the processing time of import/export clearances, reduce the number of transactions and required documents to be submitted, and remove bureaucratic red tape that has plagued businesses and citizens when dealing with the government.”
He also said TradeNet was expected to link up 66 agencies and 10 economic zones involved in approving import and export permits and other trading requirements.
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