The World Customs Organization recently conducted a four-day National Single Window (NSW) workshop at Srimongal, Bangladesh to provide cross-border regulatory agencies (CBRAs) with assistance on NSW conceptualization, design and planning
In his remarks at the workshop, State Minister for Ministry of Finance & Ministry of Planning M.A. Mannan said NSW would bring regulatory agencies under a single umbrella, benefiting traders and government with reduced transaction costs and improved efficiency.
The Chairman of the National Board of Revenue (NBR) welcomed the WCO technical assistance and capacity building program and urged workshop participants to come up with specific recommendations for efficient implementation of NSW.
Around 25 NBR senior and middle management officials and other government agencies concerned with international trade regulation and policy participated in the workshop, including those from the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism, Ministry of Agriculture, ICT Division, Atomic Energy Commission, Bangladesh Bank, Bangladesh Tax Academy, Land Port Authority, Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution, Drug Administration, Port Authority and operational managers from different functional areas of Customs and major ports/airports /land ports.
During the workshop, participants learned about best practices from other countries, and discussed the cross-border trade regulatory regime in Bangladesh and ongoing ICT initiatives. WCO experts presented various WCO instruments and tools relevant to trade facilitation that provide guidance to government agencies and private trade partners in developing effective operational procedures in a harmonized manner.
Further, WCO experts outlined the concepts of coordinated border management (CBM), cross border regulatory single window, stakeholder engagement, business process analysis (BPA), integrated risk management, and data harmonization supported by case studies from different countries, highlighting challenges and trade facilitation innovations adopted in the design and implementation of the SW.
Participants, with the support of experts, also carried out exercises for BPA within the context of Bangladesh’s cross-border regulatory regime and for NSW data harmonization.
The participants then recommended that the proposed NSW model should include the essential features of the SW – single-entry point for all regulatory information, single submission and harmonized CBRA response – for all clearances pertaining to cross-border trade. The participants identified key issues for NSW planning and made recommendations for its successful implementation.
The WCO workshop on Single Window proved effective in significantly enhancing the internal capacity of key CBRAs to plan NSW and promote trade facilitation in Bangladesh. – WCO