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Customs launches system to scan import cargo

The scheme is envisaged to reduce the physical examination of goods which is time-consuming and costlier besides causing port congestion. The program has been implemented initially at KICT, SAPT terminals of Karachi port, and at QICT, Port Qasim with effect from 19th April 2021.

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The Federal Board Revenue’s (FBR) customs wing has introduced a new automated process in the WeBOC system to scan containerized import consignment of industrial raw material to increase efficiency at the ports.

This new inspection system is non-intrusive and has been implemented initially at the Karachi International Container Terminal, South Asia Pakistan Terminals of Karachi port and at Qasim International Container Terminal, Port Qasim with effect from April 19, 2021, for industrial raw materials.

It was a long-awaited initiative aimed at reducing the time at ports by using the latest scanning technology, according to a statement issued by the FBR on Wednesday.

“The Blue channel will be part of the Risk Management System (RMS) through which Customs will be able to select the consignments of containerized cargo based on RMS by using computer program targeting the suspected shipments. The system shall operate without human intervention which is designed to be based on the risk profiling and risk parameters,” said FBR.

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The statement said that the World Customs Organization recommends the scanning of suspected cargo at ports and border stations for the security of the supply chain under its Security and Facilitation Framework (SAFE) and the Kyoto Convention.

It is worth mentioning that the textile exports from Pakistan had been mentioned to be suffering due to the unavailability of cargo containers, and such steps would prevent such congestion from happening in the future.

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The Government of Pakistan has launched the Pakistan Single Window Governing Council, an independent authority that will manage the Pakistan Single Window (PSW), which will be pivotal in unlocking Pakistan’s potential to become a hub for international transit and trade.

According to the website for PSW, the vision for the project is to emerge as the hub for services, facilitating cross border trading, in Pakistan and beyond; Establishing simplified information exchange among public and private sector stakeholders; Reducing cost and time by at least 50% from the existing level in cross border trade; Providing ICT based platform for B2B, B2G, G2G and C2C transactions in Pakistan; To establish a reliable ICT-based trade information management system to improve efficiency; to simplify and harmonize processes ensuring transparent risk-based enforcement.

The automation of WeBOC along with PSW services will facilitate external trade in Pakistan and ensure efficient port services in the country.

Read More: PM praises government’s landmark reform, Pakistan Single Window Act

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