Sri Lanka Customs ‘Single Window’ seen reducing costs

ECONOMYNEXT – A long delayed Sri Lanka Customs system aimed at streamlining the filing of import and export documentation that took effect on January 4 will reduce costs and speed up trade, a top trade official said.

“The Customs Single Window system will simplify shipment procedures, drive down costs and benefit businesses,” said Dinesh De Silva, Chairman of the Import Section of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.

The ‘Single Window’ system, where regulatory documents need to be submitted only once, will do away with the need for overlapping documentation where the same information is submitted and processed several times by different regulatory agencies.

These regulatory documents are mainly customs declarations, applications for permits, certificates of origin and trading invoices.

“The new system is critical for Sri Lanka to expand trade and improve operational efficiencies which is necessary for us to be successful in global supply chains where buyers are very demanding.” De Silva told a forum held to create awareness about the new system.

The system will also help Sri Lanka improve its position in the ease of doing business rankings, he said.

The ‘Single Window’ will enable importers and exporters to make online payments like customs duties and levies and also handles documentation of connected regulatory agencies.
 (Colombo/January 13, 2016)