January 23, 2019 07:39

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Develop a policy on customs procedures: Create trust for businesses

09:05 | 19/02/2018

VCN- Creating a legal policy system with favorable regulations, easy to implement and with long time effectiveness is the desire of many companies. Therefore, in the past, the customs law system has been regularly updated, relatively complete and in line with international standards, so that customs procedures are simpler and more transparent. Facilitating the customs sector to reform and modernize, is in line with the country's socio-economic development requirements.

develop a policy on customs procedures create trust for businesses
Customs sector is improving the institutions and policies to facilitate import-export activities. In the photo: Civil servants of Customs Sub-Department of Investment Management (Customs Department of Ho Chi Minh City) guide the procedures for businesses. Photo: T.H.

Building "support platform" for export and import activities

At the end of 2017, when many people were thinking about their plans to rest after a long and grueling day, in the working room of a Customs Department supervising officer, policymakers were still working. A plenary discussion on the draft Circular amending and supplementing Circular 38/2015/TT-BTC on customs procedures; Customs inspection and supervision; export tax, import tax and tax management for export and import goods. This is considered as the "backbone" legal document, which is the basis for the entire customs procedures, and tax administration for export goods. For policy makers, how to develop a legal document that meets the requirements of management and is in line with the objective of simplifying administrative procedures for creating a favorable business environment for enterprises, is not easy.

At the reviews, Deputy Director General of Customs General Vu Ngoc Anh requested the draft circular should be reviewed in detail, specific to each article, and clause, and should ensure strict management requirements while facilitating export and import activities. These requirements meet the guidelines of the Government and the Ministry of Finance to implement solutions to reform administrative procedures, improve the investment environment and enhance national competitiveness.

Determining the importance and contents of the draft circular relating to the ministries, branches, localities and business community, the General Department of Customs has seriously taken the necessary steps to draft the Circular in accordance with the Law on the Promulgation of Legal Documents and Decree No. 34/2016/ND-CP detailing a number of articles and measures to implement the Law on Promulgation of Legal Documents. The draft circular was amended and disseminated widely by the General Department of Customs. Through a number of workshops directly consulting with regulated entities (provincial and municipal customs departments, business communities and related state management agencies) and in writing, the General Department of Customs Officials have noted hundreds of opinions from the business community and the relevant state management agencies.

Being a person with many years of being engaged in import-export activities, regularly attending seminars organized by the customs department, Ms. Nguyen Anh Tuyet - Head of Import-Export Department of Ford Vietnam Co., highly appreciated the Customs sector's efforts in the formulation and issuance of policies. Ms. Tuyet's invitation to attend one of the General Department of Customs regularly organized associations with enterprises, is to directly comment on the policies that they preside over. The leaders of the customs sector are very aware of the difficulties of enterprises and propose solutions to solve them. "That's not all management agencies can do," Ms. Tuyet stressed.

A document of great significance, which is prepared by the General Department of Customs, is the draft decree amending and supplementing a number of articles of the Government's Decree No. 08/2015/ND-CP of January 21st, 2015. It details regulations and measures for the implementation of the Customs Law on procedures, inspection, supervision and control. This Decree not only adds clear, transparent and uniform regulations on the implementation of customs procedures for export and import goods, transport means on exit, entry, and in transit, it also facilitates the production and business activities of enterprises. At the same time, strengthening the legal basis on customs information, customs valuation, time of notification of the results of delimitation of customs declarations etc., to ensure the customs management for strengthening anti-smuggling and transportation activities of unauthorized cross border goods.

Complete policy synchronization

Regarding the formulation and improvement of customs regulations, customs policy can not fail to mention the plan to amend and supplement the Law on Export Tax and Import Tax No. 107/2016/QH13, which was launched by the Customs General Department in 2017. According to the drafting committee, the amendments mainly focus on groups of issues: the group of amendments and supplements on tax exemption to overcome obstacles, current inadequacies, and facilitate the actual deployment. It also revises groups of commodity descriptions and export tariffs for a number of commodity groups in the export tariffs, issued together with the Law on Export Tax and Import Tax. It groups amendments and supplements to the provisions on tax refund in order to achieve the objective of reforming tax administrative procedures, facilitating taxpayers in line with the policy of encouraging export production, and developing supported industry of the Party and State.

2017 is also the year the General Department of Customs finalized the draft Decree amending and supplementing Decree 01/2015/QD-CP detailing the scope of customs operation areas. This was to coordinate with one another in cooperation with other organizations and individuals for combating smuggling and illegal cross-border goods transportation, then to report them to the Finance Ministry for submission to the Government for promulgation. The contents of the draft decree are intended to overcome remaining difficulties and problems, create a common legal basis, apply uniformly the definition of areas of customs operation so as to coordinate in the prevention and combat of smuggling and illegal cross-border goods transportation.

Apart from focusing on revising important legal provisions in the field of customs, in 2017, the General Department of Customs presided over the advisory bodies at all levels to amend, supplement and promulgate 17 new legal documents. In particular, the General Department of Customs has advised the Ministry of Finance, proposed the Government to develop a Decree regulating the ASEAN Single Window, the National Single Window, and specialized inspection to facilitate maximum convenience for the export-import of goods.

Looking back at the volume of text that has been drafted by the Customs sector in 2017, the endeavor of policy makers on customs procedures is above all to build solid support. Helping businesses overcome difficulties and for development. It is hoped that these important documents will become effective in 2018, so that they will bring more advantages to businesses and people.

By Ngọc Linh/Huu Tuc