Conferences & Forums

CAREC-SASEC Inter-Subregional Knowledge Sharing Forum: Trade Facilitation and Customs Modernization

31 Oct 2019 - 2 Nov 2019 Tbilisi, Georgia

Customs agencies of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) and South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) programs, with support from the CAREC Institute and ADB-PRC Regional Knowledge Sharing Initiative, will share knowledge, experience, and best practice on challenging aspects of trade facilitation reform and modernization efforts, and (ii) identify critical success factors for effective trade facilitation measures for efficient trade flow, resource allocation, and improved regional cooperation. The General Administration of Customs of the PRC will share successes and lessons learned from implementing the PRC-Mongolia Joint Customs Control pilot project. A field visit to the Azerbaijan-Georgia border-crossing point will familiarize participants on efforts made in coordinated border management.

Chairs/Moderators:

  • Georgia Revenue Service.
  • Ministry of Finance.
  • ADB.

Participants:

  • Customs Officials (Director General (DG) and/or Deputy DG level) from participating CAREC and SASEC countries.
  • ADB staff and consultants.

Objectives:

  • Share knowledge, experience, and best practice on challenging aspects of trade facilitation reform and modernization efforts facing CAREC and SASEC customs administrations, with special emphasis on overland trade, including areas such as transit systems and facilitation, joint border controls, regional improvement of border services, and private sector involvement; and
  • Identify critical success factors for effective trade facilitation measures for efficient trade flow, resource allocation, and improved regional cooperation.

Agenda:

TimeProgram
08:30 – 09:00Registration
09:00 – 09:15Opening Session

Opening Remarks
Mr. Shane Rosenthal, Country Director, Georgia Resident Mission, ADB
Dr. Iskandar Abdullaev, Deputy Director, CAREC Institute

Welcome Remarks
Mr. Samson Uridia, Head of International Relations Department, Revenue Service of Georgia, Ministry of Finance
09:15 – 09:45Session 1: Introduction of the CAREC Customs Cooperation Committee and the SASEC Customs Subgroup
Session 1 will briefly introduce the customs platforms of CAREC and SASEC, sharing the mandate, the institutional arrangements, and the current priority areas.

Presenters:
Ms. Rose McKenzie, Senior Regional Cooperation Specialist, Public Management, Finance Sector, and Regional Cooperation Division, East Asia Department, Asian Development Bank
Ms. Aileen Pangilinan, Senior Regional Cooperation Officer, South Asia Department, ADB

Moderator:
Mr. Samson Uridia, Head of International Relations Department, Revenue Service of Georgia, Ministry of Finance

Q&A
09:45 – 10:45Session 2: Transit Systems and Facilitation
The experience of SASEC countries in development of modern transit procedures, leveraging technology to enhance security and simplify formalities will be presented. A comparative analysis of the transit systems to the provisions of Article 11 of the WTO TFA and other international best practices will be shared.
The CAREC Advanced Transit System (CATS) and Information Common Exchange (ICE) will be presented. The CATS/ICE architecture has been developed to provide a single exchange of transit data and allows for the implementation of a comprehensive transit guarantee mechanism.

Presenters:
Mr. Satish Kumar Reddy Mulamreddy, Trade Facilitation Expert, South Asia Department
Ms. Rose McKenzie, ADB

Moderator:
Mr. Masato Nakane, Senior Economist, South Asia Department, ADB

Open Discussion
10:45 – 11:00Coffee/Tea Break and Group Photo
11:00 – 12:00Session 3: Customs Cooperation and Coordinated Border Management and Regional Improvement of Border Services
CAREC will share its Joint Customs Control (JCC) Pilot Project, a priority area under the CAREC Customs Cooperation Committee (CCC) work program. The JCC pilot project is implemented between Mongolia and the PRC to address serious delays in the cross-border movement of goods in select pairs of border-crossing points (BCPs).
CAREC will present its Regional Improvement of Border Services projects, with the specific example of the Kyrgyz Republic and Tajikistan BCPs, which were identified as major bottlenecks for transport and trade along CAREC corridors. Complementary investments in BCP infrastructure and the introduction of single windows, together with border control agency cooperation, have helped eliminate some of the bottlenecks.
SASEC will share experience in its coordinated approach to improving border infrastructure and complementary facilities, cross-border connectivity, and support for trade and transport facilitation reforms to make cross-border trade in the region efficient and well-regulated.

Presenters:
Mr. Dong Xiaolin, Division Director of Department of Port Control, General Administration of Customs of PRC
Mr. Azim Tursunzoda, First Deputy Head, Customs Service of the Republic of Tajikistan
Mr. Satish Kumar Reddy Mulamreddy, Trade Facilitation Expert, South Asia Department
Ms. Aileen Pangilinan, ADB

Moderator:
Ms. Rose McKenzie, ADB

Open Discussion
12:00 – 12:30Session 4: CAREC Institute Trade Related Activities
CAREC Institute will present its trade related activities in relation to customs cooperation including activities in e-Commerce, e-certification for SPS, etc.

Presenter:
Dr. Iskandar Abdullaev, Deputy Director, CAREC Institute

Moderator:
Ms. Rose McKenzie, ADB
12:30 – 14:00Lunch
14:00 – 14:45Session 5: Engagement with the Private Sector for Effective Trade Facilitation
SASEC will present on designing institutionalized structures for engaging with the private sector for obtaining feedback on policy reforms and legal processes and other statutory requirements. The role of Customs Administrations in coordinating between private sector and other cross- border regulatory agencies will also be discussed. The need for multi-level institutional mechanisms for such engagement and the challenges in their sustainable functioning will be shared.
Pakistan’s National Trade and Transport Facilitation Committee (NTTFC) was first established through a government resolution in 1998. In February 2018, the NTTFC was reconstituted to meet the new requirements under the WTO TFA. The new NTTFC also identifies issues and problems involving stakeholders, including private sector issues related to trade facilitation.

Presenters:
Mr. Satish Kumar Reddy Mulamreddy, Trade Facilitation Expert, South Asia Department
Mr. Muhammad Javed Ghani, Member, Customs Policy, Federal Board of Revenue, Pakistan

Moderator:
Mr. Ronald Butiong, Director, South Asia Department, ADB

Open Discussion
14:45 – 15:00Coffee/Tea Break
15:00 – 16:00Session 6: Authorized Economic Operator Systems
CAREC will present Georgia’s Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) scheme based on their experience from the Revenue Service “Golden List” Program introduced in 2008, which grants certain customs simplifications to trusted companies when importing and/or exporting of goods to and from Georgian customs territory.
SASEC will share its experience in introducing a multi-tiered compliance management program to suit the needs of various players in the supply chain, the approach taken for speedy validation, advocacy and designing benefits relevant to the trade needs. The challenges faced in propagating the program will also be discussed.

Presenters:
Ms. Ketevan Bitsadze, Senior Auditor, Post Clearance Audit Division, Customs Department, Georgia Revenue Service
Mr. Satish Kumar Reddy Mulamreddy, Trade Facilitation Expert, South Asia Department

Moderator:
Ms. Rose McKenzie, ADB

Open Discussion
16:00 – 16:30Session 7: Wrap Up and Closing of Learning Event
Mr. Samson Uridia, Georgia Revenue Service
Mr. Ronald Antonio Q. Butiong, ADB
19:00 – 2100Dinner sponsored by Georgia Revenue Service
Pick-up at hotel lobby at 19:00. The dress code is official, no casual attire please.

Dinner sponsored by South Asia Subregional Economic Cooperation Program at ATI Restaurant

TimeProgram
09:30 – 10:00Assembly at the Lobby
10:00 – 11:00Leave promptly from hotel to Tsiteli Khidi Border Crossing Point (BCP)
11:00 – 13:00Tour of the Tsiteli Khidi BCP
13:00 – 14:00Travel from BCP to the Lunch Venue
14:00 – 15:30Lunch at the Bread House in Tbilisi
15:30 – 16:00Travel back to the hotel

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