Businesses save up to $67m thanks to custom reforms

Vietnamese and American businesses could save US$67 million thanks to administrative custom reforms, according to Bradley Bessire, acting director of Vietnam Mission from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).


Speaking at a conference in HCM City on Wednesday, Bessire said Vietnamese customs authorities have been working closely with his agency to push through administrative reforms, facilitate trade, reduce costs and streamline import/export protocols.

A number of new protocols have been implemented by the General Department of Vietnam Customs with support from USAID for imported goods, aiming at reducing time and cost for businesses.

Bessire said up to 54 per cent of the current border checking protocols could be removed, saving 2.5 million work days off and a host of other associated costs.

Mai Xuan Thanh, deputy head of the general department, said Vietnamese customs authorities are fully committed to staying on course with its administrative reforms and implementing more efficient methods to better support trade, as well as business communities.

The Vietnamese Government has been hard at work to fulfil all trade facilitation agreements it has signed with the World Trade Organization (WTO), according to Thanh. By early 2020, more than 12,600 goods (or 15 per cent of all imported goods) had benefited from these agreements. The Southeast Asian country was to meet all obligations set by the WTO by the end of 2024.

Deputy Minister of Finance Nguyen Duc Chi said despite numerous challenges due to the pandemic, Viet Nam has made significant progress in the implementation of custom administrative reforms.

The country's trade revenue reached over $545 billion in the year 2020, a 5.4 per cent increase from the previous year with Vietnamese customs authorities handling nearly 14 million files.

In 2021, Viet Nam's trade turnover was reported to reach nearly $670 billion, a 22.8 per cent increase from 2020 as Vietnamese customs authorities handled 14.6 million files.

By mid-November this year, import-export revenue has reached $665 billion.

Chi said the reforms, designed to improve speed and convenience for importers and exporters, have helped create a more transparent and fair playing field, a key component in the Government's effort to attract foreign investment into the country and to protect its supply chain during and after the pandemic years. 


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