Cross Border Paperless Trade

Cross Border Paperless Trade in future to increase compliance

Cross Border paperless trade will increase efficiency, compliance and risk management in the future.

Fiji border stakeholders engaged in a one-day National Consultation workshop on Cross Border paperless trade facilitation workshop in Suva today.

Cross border paperless trade is trade taking place on the basis of electronic communications, including exchange of trade related data and documents in electronic form across borders.

United Nations ESCAP representative from Thailand, Mr. Yann Duval from the Trade Facilitation Unit, Trade Investment and Innovation Division office conducted the workshop in collaboration with Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority (FRCS).

“I am glad that we are hosting this consultation here today and that Fiji and the region is making significant progress towards a framework agreement,” FRCS Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Visvanath Das said during the opening of the workshop.

“Certainly Fiji stands to benefit immensely from this treaty. We are after all a trade hub in the region and the volume of trade is growing,” Mr. Das said.

“Fiji has ratified the World Trade Organization Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) and as key components of the Fiji economy we are all now going to implement the TFA,” he said.

“The electronic trade treaty will focus on implementing digital trade facilitation measures to specifically achieve paperless trade across our borders and that it will also support the WTO TFA. Furthermore, it is also expected to harmonize the growing number of bilateral and sub-regional paperless trade initiatives in the region,” he added.

Mr. Das said this is an opportunity for trade partners to work together and achieve digitization in trade dealings.

“The key benefit here is that we can grow our exports and reduce the transaction time and cost of trade,” he said.

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“We look forward to contribute to this new framework under the UN ESCAP as it ties in well with our plans for the future sustainability of FRCS and certainly for Fiji’s trade competitiveness and economic growth,” he said.

“Not to mention the benefits to our private sector in terms of improved levels of compliance to regulatory requirements in international trade. There will surely be technical and legal barriers to cross-border paperless trade for both public and private stakeholders and perhaps the key is to keep in mind the benefits that can be reaped once there is full cohesion achieved,” he added.

Mr. Duval said there is a need for motivated countries to work together to design legal solutions based on international standards, individual data models and trade facilitation agreement.

He added Cross Border paperless trade data used by exports and imports parties will increase compliance and easy to detect risk.

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