Vietnam Customs provides fresh impetus for businesses to recover and thrive

VCN - On the occasion of the 78th anniversary of the establishment of Vietnam Customs (September 10, 1945 - September 10, 2023), on September 6, Customs Magazine organised the Customs-Business Forum 2023 with the theme "Vietnam Customs: Providing fresh impetus for businesses to recover and thrive".
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The Forum. Photo: Thai Binh
The Forum. Photo: Thai Binh

Customs offers many facilitation solutions

On behalf of the leaders of the General Department of Vietnam Customs (GDVC), Deputy Director General Hoang Viet Cuong; Mr Hoang Quang Phong, Vice President of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI); Ms Nguyen Minh Thao-Nguyen Minh Thao, Head of the Business Environment and Competitiveness Research Department, at the Central Institute for Economic Management (CIEM).

Attending the Forum were 250 delegates, guests, businesses and press agencies, including representatives of leaders of some units under the GDVC, local customs units and representatives of some units under the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Industry and Trade, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Ministry of Health; businesses, business associations and foreign business associations of in Vietnam (Europe, USA, Japan, Korea, India...).

The Annual Customs- Business Forum 2023 aims to recognise the participation and assessment of the business community in the process of customs reform and modernisation to build a culture of compliance with customs laws for businesses. This is also an opportunity for the Customs to give a message on further reform, modernising, and developing the Customs – Business partnership and stakeholders in 2023, contributing to promoting trade facilitation and logistics development.

Currently, the General Department of Customs is strengthening the implementation of the Customs Development Strategy until 2030, aiming to build regular and modern Vietnam Customs on par with the Customs of developed countries in the world and lead in implementing Digital Government with a Smart Customs model.

Attending and giving a welcome speech to the Forum, Deputy Director General Hoang Viet Cuong highly appreciated the Customs Magazine for organising this Forum.

Deputy General Director Hoang Viet Cuong: Accompanying businesses also protects genuine businesses. Photo: Thai Binh
Deputy Director General Hoang Viet Cuong: Accompanying businesses also protects genuine businesses. Photo: Thai Binh

Deputy General Director Hoang Viet Cuong said that 78 years ago, on September 10, 1945, only eight days after the country was established, Minister of Home Affairs Vo Nguyen Giap signed Decree No. 27/ SL establishing the Department of Tariffs and Indirect Taxes, the predecessor of Vietnam Customs.

Over the past 78 years, Vietnam Customs has grown and matured with the country's revolutionary cause. Generations of civil servants, officials and employees of the Customs have made great efforts to complete their assigned tasks, making important contributions to the proud results of the Finance sector and the construction and protection of the country.

Deputy Director General Hoang Viet Cuong said that the world's changes from the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, the competition between major economies and the armed conflict between Russia and Ukraine have severely impacted our economy. From the beginning of 2023, our country's economy has faced huge difficulties. With that situation, Customs has determined that reform, simplifying administrative procedures, customs modernisation, and trade facilitation are the key cross-cutting tasks, creating fresh impetus for businesses to recover and thrive, contributing to economic growth.

Implementing Resolution 01 of the Government, the Customs has continued to review, supplement, amend and perfect the system of legal documents on customs to meet management requirements in the new situation to help improve the business investment environment and national competitiveness.

"From the beginning of the year, the GDVC issued Decision No. 123/QD-TCHQ dated January 31, 2023, on assigning administrative reform targets simplifying customs procedures and trade facilitation in 2023. Accordingly, we have assigned 10 targets of reform accompanied by solutions for implementation. The notable points are reducing the 5% Red channel declaration rate, 10% Yellow channel declaration rate; reducing customs clearance and release time by 10%, and increasing by 20% the number of businesses voluntarily participating in the Program to encourage businesses to comply with customs laws ", said the leader of the General Department of Customs.

Another program implemented for many years is the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) Program. It has shown positive effects in creating favourable conditions for import and export businesses. Through the pilot period from 2011, the official implementation from 2014, by the end of 2022, the country has 74 enterprises entitled to priority enterprise regime.

"Especially in early 2023, the GDVC signed a Mutual Recognition Agreement on the AEO Program with the Customs administrations of ASEAN member countries. This is the first AEO agreement with a foreign country that Vietnam signed and implemented. According to the targets set out in the Customs Development Strategy by 2030, the GDVC will continue to improve regulations on AEO based on recommendations of the World Customs Organization (WCO) to expand participants and continue to promote the implementation of mutual recognition agreements on AEO between Vietnam Customs and customs of important partner countries in the world", Deputy Director General Hoang Viet Cuong emphasise.

Speaking of implementing the Program to encourage businesses to comply with customs laws voluntarily, the GDVC's leader said that from 2022, the Customs has issued a Decision on the implementation. In 2023, the Program has been enhanced at local Customs departments with a series of memoranda of understanding signed between Customs authorities and businesses. This is a practical activity, one that few management agencies carry out.

Accompanying is protecting businesses

With practical benefits, the Program has attracted the business community's attention, contributing to a change in the perception of businesses towards legal compliance. The Customs sector will consider expanding the participants to attract many businesses to participate and enjoy the policy. "We set a target that after two years of implementation, 100% of enterprises participating in the Program will not be sanctioned for customs law violations and be assessed for legal compliance at level 2 (high compliance) or level 3 (medium compliance). After five years of implementing the Program, through support activities and voluntary compliance of enterprises, it will strive to increase the compliance rate AT level 2 and level 3 to over 20% of the total number of import and export enterprises, Mr Hoang Viet Cuong said.

Affirming that accompanying businesses are also protecting genuine businesses, Mr. Hoang Viet Cuong said, facing the globalised context where smuggling, trade fraud, and illegal transportation of goods across borders have become extremely complicated with sophisticated and unpredictable methods and tricks. The Customs sector determined that supporting businesses has also enhanced the efficiency of state management of customs fight against smuggling and trade fraud.

According to the leader of the GDVC, for the Customs-business partnership to be more and more effective, in addition to the efforts of the Customs, it needs the active participation of ministries, agencies, associations, VCCI, the Small and Medium Enterprises Association and especially the active participation of the business community. "Therefore, the Customs sector expects businesses to continue to coordinate with and accompany the Customs to diversify Customs-businesses partnership activities. The business community's companionship, dynamism and creativity will be an important factor in creating success and development, " said Deputy Director General Hoang Viet Cuong.

Editor-in-Chief of Customs Magazine Vu Thi Anh Hong: The Forum is a practical activity to look back at the overall picture of the work the customs has been implementing. Photo: Thai Binh
Editor-in-Chief of Customs Magazine Vu Thi Anh Hong: The Forum is a practical activity to look back at the overall picture of the work the customs has been implementing. Photo: Thai Binh

On behalf of the Organizing Committee, Editor-in-Chief of Customs Magazine Vu Thi Anh Hong said: The Customs-Business Forum 2023, with the theme "Vietnam Customs provides fresh impetus for businesses to recover and thrive", is a practical activity to look back at the overall picture of the work that the Customs sector has been implementing, evaluate the advantages and disadvantages as well as discuss and propose solutions to be implemented in the future. The Customs Magazine believes that the exchanges, dialogues, ideas and recommendations at the Forum will be helpful to ideas for the Customs agency and state management agencies to perfect the legal framework and policies to support businesses.

Working together to build a culture of law compliance

The Forum includes two sessions:

Session 1: "Customs makes efforts to reform and facilitate trade."

The session discussed improving policy institutions, reforming administrative procedures, facilitating trade, providing impetus for businesses to recover and thrive, building information technology solutions to support state management requirements for exported and imported goods, means of transport on exit and entry, towards Digital Customs and Smart Customs; appreciating comments and opinions from specialised management agencies and business associations to improve the law.

The speakers are Mr Le Duc Thanh - Director of the Customs Information Technology and Statistics Department and Mr Dao Duy Tam - Deputy Director of the Control and Supervision Department under the GDVC; Mr Nguyen Tran Hieu, Director of Binh Duong Customs Department, VCCI's Chairman Vice Chairman Mr Hoang Quang Phong.

Session 2: "Working together to build a culture of compliance with customs laws."

The session focused on evaluating and perfecting policies on AEOs, enhancing the responsibilities and rights of AEOs, which are mutually recognised domestically and internationally, and reviewing the "Pilot Program to encourage businesses to comply with customs laws voluntarily.

The speakers include Mr Nguyen Nhat Kha - Director of the Risk Management Department under the General Department; Mr Nguyen Sy Hoang - Deputy Director of the Post-Customs Clearance Audit Department; Mr Dang Cong Thanh-Deputy Director of Hai Phong Customs Department; Ms Nguyen Minh Thao - Nguyen Minh Thao, Head of the Business Environment and Competitiveness Research Department, at CIEM.

Within the framework of the Forum, the GDVC praised 10 typical businesses that have actively participated in the "Pilot program to encourage businesses to comply with customs laws voluntarily".

Customs Magazine continues to report on the Forum.

By Ngoc Linh/ Huyen Trang

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