Streamlined customs procedures are speeding trade and cutting costs for traders and consumers.
29 JULY 2012 | HERAT, AFGHANISTAN
Afghanistan Customs Department (ACD) has streamlined customs procedures, prompting enthusiasm among Herat traders.
“This has had a positive impact on our business,” said Ahmad Wali, a shareholder of Etemad Co. Ltd., which imports tires from China and Japan and blankets from China and South Korea. “Before, we were required to spend a lot of time and money on customs clearance. Now within a few hours, customs is releasing our containers, which is a big step toward more and cheaper imports into Afghanistan.”
In support of this effort, ACD worked with USAID to streamline and standardize new customs procedures at Afghanistan’s customs checkpoints. With USAID’s support, ACD rolled out the new procedures in Jalalabad, Kandahar, Hairatan, Sher Khan Bandar, two customs offices in Kabul, and most recently in Herat.
Mr. Wali isn’t the only trader in Herat seeing benefits just three months after implementation. Haji Abdul Rahman, the owner of Bashiri Co. Ltd. which imports generators and oil from the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, Italy, and China, said that before the new procedures were introduced, his company endured lengthy and expensive delays at the border, forcing the company to pass on the costs to Afghan customers to keep afloat.
“Now we will import more, and sell more products to the Afghan people at a better price.” said Haji Rahman.
Last updated: January 06, 2014