Japan to assist in Cambodian customs clearance

15 January 2021 –

The Japanese government will assist the Cambodian General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia (GDCE) in setting up an automated customs clearance system that will speed up cargo clearance time, alleviating the problem congestion problems that slow the clearance process.

The GDCE held a meeting with representatives of the Japanese business community investing in Cambodia on January 13 to discuss and seek solutions to problems related to import and export goods and customs clearance procedures.

Representatives from both parties attended the meeting including the director-general of Customs, Kun Nhem, the Chairman of the Japanese Business Association of Cambodia (JBAC), the Japanese Embassy in Cambodia and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

Kamei Haruko, director of the JICA in Cambodia, disclosed that the Japanese side is currently studying how to alleviate the congestion problem at border crossings between Cambodia and Vietnam.

She said Japan will test the new automated customs clearance system at Cambodia’s main ports and customs. This will include the installation of customs inspection camera systems to speed up customs clearance time.

She added that Japan will also assist in translating customs regulations into English and uploading them to the General Administration of Customs of Cambodia’s website so importers and exporters can better understand customs clearance procedures.

At the meeting, Customs Director Kun Nhem reported on recent measures implemented in Cambodia to simplify and improve import and export procedures. This included the establishment of a “National Single Window” system that would allow for application online for raw materials and finished products import/export official documents.

He stated the “National Single Window” system will connect six government departments, namely the General Department of Customs and Excise (GDCE), the Cambodian Development Council (CDC), the Ministry of Commerce (MOC), the Ministry of Industry, Science Technology and Innovation (MISTI) the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), and the Ministry of Health (MOH).

The director stated that the GDCE is committed to improving administrative efficiency with the assistance of multiple development partners. For example, it cooperated with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in establish an Automated Customs Data System (ASYCUDA) which is now in its final stage of development.

“With the assistance of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), we are also implementing a business process re-engineering plan, while reviewing and revising customs regulations,” Kun said

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