Timor-Leste Increase Pace of Trade by Strengthening and Accelerating Electronic Customs Clearance Processes

Wed. 01 of December of 2021, 03:50h

Today, 27 November 2021, the Government of Timor-Leste has simplified the process of engaging in international trade by adding capabilities to the Electronic Single Window system used when declaring imports and exports to the country’s customs department. It has also connected other government departments to this system, meaning that importers and exporters have less bureaucratic processes to follow when trading internationally.

The Ministry of Finance, through the Customs Authority has connected the: Ministry of Tourism, Commerce and Industry; the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, the Ministry of Health (SAMES, I.P.); and the Ministry of Transportations (APORTIL. I.P.)  to new capabilities provided by the country’s ASYCUDA Electronic Single Window.

In May 2017, Timor-Leste selected ASYCUDAWorld as the platform on which to develop the National Single Window System in Timor-Leste. The system is an automated platform and single gateway through which  the Customs Authority, all relevant ministries, government agencies, and trading operators can share and exchange information in a standardized manner that helps traders fulfill relevant regulatory requirements for customs clearance. In other words, the National Single Window provides online application processes that offer simplification, security, facilitation, standardization, and harmonization. This in turn reduces the cost of doing international business, shortens clearance times, delivers paperless transactions, and improves control over the movement of goods.

The National Single Window program is built on the successful implementation of the Customs automated system, ASYCUDAWorld, in Timor-Leste as a part of the long term cooperation between the Government of Timor-Leste  and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) contributing to the ongoing efforts on the improvement of the government finances, focusing on increasing efficiency in the customs clearance processes.

Aside from the launch, today also saw the signing of technical cooperation protocols between the Customs’ Commissioner and the Director-General for Commerce of the Ministry of Tourism, Commerce and Industry, the Director-General for Cooperation and Institutional Development of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, the President of APORTIL, I.P., and the President of SAMES, I.P. respectively. The protocols outlined collective agreements between the signing parties to cooperate on preventing customs offenses, exchanging fiscal and customs related information, and preventing and combating breaches of the law that fall under their respective remits.

The Minister of Finance of the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste, H.E. Mr. Rui Augusto Gomes urged the relevant government ministries and agencies to continue taking proactive measures and to collaborate on using the National Electronic Single Window System, to enhance international trade facilitation.