Central America could improve its competitiveness and increase trade volumes with the unification of criteria for logistics processes under "a regional vision," said an expert from the International Finance Corporation (IFC).
Central America has to "make an effort" to improve its foreign trade logistics processes, "but with a regional vision (...), this is critical," said Peruvian Alvaro Quijandria, regional manager of IFC Investment Climate Latin America and the Caribbean, World Bank (WB), to Efe according to LaTribuna.hn review.
"It is imperative" that logistics are unified "for greater international competitiveness," said Quijandria. The expert gave the example that if Central America managed to reduce transport times for cargo by 10%, the volume of trade would increase by 3.5%.
Quijandria said that if there were "an integrated vision for the entire chain involved in the operation of foreign trade," there would also be a decrease in costs.
Both governments announced that they have signed an agreement to unify customs in order to expedite the transport of vehicles and people, with effect from 1 June.
With this agreement, it is expected that the border between the two nations will be fully liberated for both freight and passengers in December. Immigration procedures will be carried out online or in an office to be located near the border area.
Industry representatives stressed the need to "adopt technologies and invest in training in order to turn Panama into an efficient and world class logistics platform ."
During the 49th edition of the Annual Conference of Executives (CADE) 2015 the participants emphasized the need to strengthen the National Customs Authority with trained and well-paid human resources, in order to reduce the time spent on customs clearance because of lack of automation of information and personnel that manage it.
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