Export declarations now automated at Kingston port
As of this week, all commercial export declarations from the Port of Kingston are required to be processed using the Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA), as part of the Government's effort to strengthen tax and customs administration.
The Jamaica Customs Agency said it has taken specific measures to ensure that end-users are equipped with the capacity to use the system.
It said it has also partnered with JAMPRO, Jamaica's national investment and export promotion agency, to provide client support to registered exporters who require assistance in preparing commercial export declarations.
"The full implementation of ASYCUDA World will improve trade facilitation and service delivery to our customers, through simplified and efficient processes," it said.
"The JCA is fully committed to this initiative as we seek to strengthen client relations and effect positive changes to the trading environment," it added.
ASYCUDA is a computerised customs management system, which covers most foreign trade procedures. The system handles manifests and customs declarations, accounting procedures, transit and suspense procedures.
According to the March 2015 memorandum of economic and financial policies the Government submitted to the International Monetary Fund, next steps to strengthen tax and customs administration include implementing the full-function production version of the ASYCUDA-World integrated customs software package for the entire country, after completing pilot testing which ran from December 2014 to this month.
Under the programme, the Government also plans to establish a Port Community System to electronically integrate and streamline export and import procedures.
The ASYCUDA World customs management system acquired by Jamaica Customs, will support integrated processes/procedures and the National Single Window. Functions of the Port Community System, which cannot be offered through ASYCUDA, will be pursued by the private sector, possibly under a management contract, the Government said.
The systems will ultimately be integrated to provide a complete trade and logistics solution for Jamaica, and is expected to be completed by the end of fiscal year 2016-17.