Customs Conditional Release as a tool for decreasing the number of control agency at the border
One of the recent reforms towards trade facilitation has been the conclusion of the agreement between Customs Service of Tajikistan and Tajikistan Agency on Standardization, Accreditation and Certification on the mandatory certification procedure of products entering Tajikistan’s customs territory. This reform has been introduced through Order №727, of February 11, 2014, which is registered within Ministry of Justice as. This new procedure has been developed based on the current Tajik legislation and establishes the order and sequence of administrative procedures related to the customs clearance of goods imported into the customs territory subject to mandatory certification.
The conformity certificate is a document certifying the conformity of the object with the requirements of technical regulations and documents in the field of standardization. Obtaining a certificate of conformity confirms the safety and quality of imported products. This certificate may also be a certificate of recognition of a foreign certificate of conformity.
The basic idea of this initiative is to facilitate the procedures for transport companies and traders while their goods enter the country through a decreasing number of control agencies at the border. In the present case the Agency on Standardization, Certification, Accreditation and Trade inspection will be in charge of this newly set procedure. So, how it will work? Importers of goods can benefit from this procedure starting from March 1. According to Customs Service all customs officers have been informed about the new procedure.
Goods entering Tajikistan customs territory and subject to mandatory certification will be cleared under the conditional release status. Products under customs conditional release do remain under the customs control and cannot be put on the market or used in any way without obtaining the conformity certificate. The customs conditional release is an agreement between customs and the declarant that products are prohibited to be sold or used unless the certificate of conformity is provided, within the period specified in the Order. The time for issuance of certificate of compliance for conformity assessment shall not exceed 3 working days, and no more than 2 business days in the case of perishable products. The deadline for issuance of the certificate of conformity should not exceed 7 working days, in respect of certification work for more than 3 types of products. Basically declarant takes the obligation to provide a certificate of conformity within the time limits mentioned above and benefits from the new procedures of goods import.
Even though it is almost certain that the Tajik standard Agency will be removed from the border, it does not imply that imported goods will be sold without obtaining a conformity certificate. The certificate will continue to be issued according to the national system of certification rules.
However, experts involved in the process of food safety system reform are claiming that according to the Tajikistan WTO commitments require that the Tajikstandard Agency’s conducts a total institutional reform before 2015. For some reasons the reforms are not moving forward in accordance of the Action Plan adopted by the Government of Tajikistan in 2010 on legislative and institutional reforms of technical regulation system of Tajikistan. Thus Agency Tajikstandard continues its existence in traders’ life as Agency controlling the certification, accreditation, standardization and trade inspection in spite of conflict of interest of activities performed under the roof of single body..
Both food safety area experts and the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Tajikistan consider that for a proper implementation of the food safety system in Tajikistan there should be first, an adequate strategy adopted to plan the necessary reforms to be conducted in the technical regulation system. Upon the request of the MEDT, the OSCE has conducted a research of food safety system in Tajikistan and the report will be available soon to a wider audience for discussion.
For additional information please contact:
(+992 37) 233-68-69 , Tajikstandard Agency
+(992 37) 221-16-92, Customs
Efforts on reduction of procedures and documents towards facilitation of trade
The draft of an action plan on the simplification of administrative procedures for export, import and transit of goods, developed by experts from the GIZ Regional Economic Cooperation Project, reflects a list of short-term measures to simplify administrative procedures related to foreign trade activities. The main purpose of the action plan is to improve the business climate in the country and improve Tajikistan’s ranking under the World Bank Doing Business rating.
The objectives of the plan are:
– Reduction/limitation of formalities and documentation requirements when issuing permits, licenses and certificates;
- Reduction of time and cost necessary to go through all administrative procedures related to registration of export, import and transit operations; To reduce the list of documents required for obtaining certificate of conformity, veterinary documents and obtain certification of veterinary drugs, phytosanitary and sanitary permits.
– Standardization/unification of documents in consistence to international requirements;
- Unification of trade data via the simplification and standardization of documents in accordance with international standards
– Ensure access to information on fees, timeframes and necessary documents for obtaining licenses related to export, import and transit procedures;
- Information on the procedures, terms and conditions for obtaining permits and certificates for export, import and transit of goods must be available on agencies websites.
– Introduce a ‘One Stop Shop’ principle at the border.
The document is currently under the consideration of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Tajikistan and will be disseminated among other ministries and agencies to obtain their approval.
Nevertheless, the private sector is always welcome to pass on suggestions through the focal points in the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Tajikistan.
Parviz Kamoliddinov, firstname.lastname@example.org
Firuz Subhonov, email@example.com