Reforms improve India’s trade facilitation ranking
NEW DELHI: India has improved its ranking in trade facilitation thanks to various reforms undertaken by the Central Indirect Taxes and Customs Council (CBIC), the finance ministry said on Friday.
According to the Global Digital and Sustainable Trade Facilitation Survey, India’s score fell from 78.49% in 2019 to 90.2% in 2021.
The biennial survey is organized by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). For 2021, he studied 58 trade facilitation measures undertaken by 143 countries under the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) of the World Trade Organization (WTO).
“CBIC has been at the forefront of innovative reforms under the umbrella of ‘Turant’ customs to usher in faceless, paperless and contactless customs through a series of reforms. This has had a direct impact in terms of improving ESCAP’s ranking on digital and sustainable trade facilitation, ”the ministry said.
The ministry said during the pandemic, customs formations made efforts to speed up covid-related imports such as oxygen equipment, life-saving medicines and vaccines. “A 24/7 covid support service dedicated to Exim trade has been created on the CBIC website to facilitate rapid resolution of issues faced by importers,” he added.
The survey is eagerly awaited globally as it offers factual data on the desired impact of trade facilitation measures, in addition to making comparisons between countries.
A higher score for any country helps companies make investment decisions.
Concluded at the WTO Ministerial Conference in Bali in 2013, the TFA contains provisions aimed at speeding up the movement, release and clearance of goods. It also sets out measures for effective cooperation between customs and other authorities in trade facilitation and customs compliance.
India has significantly improved the scores of the five key parameters of trade facilitation. In transparency, India’s score fell from 93.33% in 2019 to 100%. In formalities (95.83%), institutional arrangements and cooperation (81.48%) and paperless trade (96.3%), India has made significant progress in 2021. However, in trade without cross-border paper, it was only 66.67% in 2021, up from 55.56% in 2019.
According to the survey, India is the best performing country in the South and South West Asia region (63.12%) and the Asia Pacific region (65.85%).
India’s overall score was higher than that of many Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development countries, including the United Kingdom, France and Canada.
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