Approaching Smart Customs Model

9:04:19 AM | 1/6/2021

The General Department of Vietnam Customs is proposing to amend some decrees for smart and digital customs development aligned with the implementation of the Overall Customs Information Technology System Reconstruction Project and the framework for the Customs Development Strategy.

Needs from practice

To match with ongoing processes and future development plans, some decrees need to be revamped, according to the General Department of Customs.

Assessing the enforcement of Decree 08/2015/ND-CP, which is amended and supplemented in Decree 59/2018/ND-CP, the General Department of Customs said the decree has helped accelerate administrative reforms, create a favorable environment for investment, import and export activities, improve customs performance and ensure state management of customs.

However, Decree 08/2015/ND-CP revealed some matters which are no longer consistent with current management practices or overlap with new regulations. Especially, carrying out Decision 97/QD-BTC dated January 26, 2021 of the Ministry of Finance on the policy of hiring information technology (IT) services for digital customs, the General Department is building smart customs and digital customs management models aligned with the implementation of the Overall Customs Information Technology System Reconstruction Project and the framework for the Customs Development Strategy on the basis of exercising centralized management, applying new technological achievements in line with international standards, meeting requirements of smart administration, trade facilitation, integration, connection, sharing and exchange of customs data with related parties. Therefore, it is extremely necessary and important to amend and supplement Decree 08/2015/ND-CP and Decree 59/2018/ND-CP.

Further procedural simplification

Currently, the General Department of Customs is studying amendments and supplements to decrees to unify contents of effective legal documents such as the Law on Tax Administration; Decree 85/2019/ND-CP dated November 14, 2019 of the Government on implementation of administrative procedures under the National Single Window, the ASEAN Single Window and specialized inspection for exports and imports; Decree 82/2018/ND-CP dated May 22, 2018 of the Government on management of industrial zones and economic zones and the draft Decree on State inspection of quality and safety for imported goods.

The amendment aims to simplify administrative procedures, ensure implementation transparency of administrative procedures, and facilitate export and import, as well as entry and exit of transport means for enterprises. Amendment and supplementation must be consistent with international commitments and treaties on customs to which Vietnam is a signatory.

In particular, amending and supplementing regulations to approach smart and digital customs models aligned with the implementation of the Overall Customs Information Technology System Reconstruction Project and the framework for the Customs Development Strategy on the basis of exercising centralized management, applying new technological achievements in line with international standards, meeting requirements of smart administration, trade facilitation, integration, connection, sharing and exchange of customs data with related parties.

The smart customs model is integrated into existing working systems, powered by cutting-edge technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution for information exchange and sharing, data management, automatic data analysis, visualization and supply chain management. Therefore, the decree will stipulate validity principles for the enactment of the Smart Customs Management System, and at the same time, ensure its enforcement when this system is not available, for example, regulations on digitization of customs documents; result notification of commodity flow at the border; automatic customs clearance upon receipt of specialized inspection results from the National Single Window Portal; the use of container scanning images; and prevention of duplicate bill of lading information.

In addition, the General Department of Customs will study and propose amendments to regulations on customs records, physical inspection of goods and paper declarations in Decree 08/2015/ND-CP and Decree 59/2018/ND-CP which are aimed at reforming and facilitating trade. Regarding specialized inspection, customs authorities will review regulations on specialized inspection of exported and imported commodities, eradicate overlapped contents with Decree 85/2019/ND-CP dated November 14, 2019 of the Government and the draft decree on state inspection of quality and safety of imported goods.

Many matters arising in practice were also studied and considered, including management of outsourced goods and export-oriented production; customs procedures for goods in transit; places for customs clearance for goods that are temporarily imported for re-export (including goods used for sports competitions); tax policy issues, customs value issues and new contents of Decree 18/2021/ND-CP.

By Le Hien, Vietnam Business Forum