By mid-year the Single Window for Foreign Trade could be functioning, enabling online procedures to be used for obtaining permits and documents required for export or import.
The Ministry of Development, Industry and Trade (MIFIC) announced that in May pre customs formalities for exports and imports in Nicaragua will be able to be done online through the Foreign Trade Single Window (known as VUCEN in Spanish).
Approval has been given to the list of products exempted for free movement and the format of the invoice and Central American single declaration.
From a statement issued by Sieca:
Central America, January 27, 2017.In the fifteenth round of negotiations held in Tegucigalpa between January 23 and 27 2017, Guatemala and Honduras adopted measures to accelerate the implementation of a Customs Union between the two countries.
The procedures for obtaining operating permits and municipal licenses are the things that cause the most difficulty for companies who are trying to formalize their operations in the country.
Despite constant complaints by entrepreneurs, excessive bureaucracy remains one of the main obstacles to the formalization of companies in Costa Rica. According to a business survey developed by Uccaep, the procedures for obtaining operation permits from the Ministry of Health and municipal patents are the most difficult tasks to carry out and those which take the most time.
A simpler scheme for importing materials is one of the new features included in the new regulations announced to facilitate procedures for free zone companies.
The leaders of the Superior Council of Private Enterprise (COSEP) announced that the new technical circular for free zone companies will be in effect from February 1, and includes, among other things, adjustments to the time and costs incurred by companies when transporting goods.
January 1 saw the coming into force of a new nomenclature, which extends Tariff System Codes to 10 digits.
The implementation of the Sixth Amendment to the nomenclature of the Tariff Description and Coding System (SAC by its initials in Spanish) and the extension to more digits of codes for goods that are exported and imported was approved by the World Customs Organization (WCO) on June 27, 2014 in order to maintain, in terms of tariff nomenclature, a common language which facilitates international exchange.
As part of the implementation of the Customs Union, Corinto was designated as a new integrated custom office, and operations will begin in the first quarter of 2017.
The resolution signed yesterday by officials of the two nations to enable the passage through Corinth in Entre Ríos, Izabal, heralds the start of a new route with greater opportunities for bilateral trade.
As part of the measures announced to solve the problems at the customs office in the port, the Honduran government has announced a tender to purchase modern container inspection technology.
More than 200 containers were released from the cargo terminal at Puerto Cortes in Honduras in the early hours of Monday as a result of government measures to address the lack of agility in the customs process, which has caused losses of $45 million, according Laprensa.hn.
All customs posts, including that of Puerto Cortés, will operate 12-hour days 7 days a week, in order to decongest and streamline processes that have been become delayed.
From a statement issued by the Chamber of Commerce and Industries in Cortés:
By agreement with the Chamber of Commerce and Industries of Cortés, Customs, Fenaduanah, DARA and the Presidential Commission, there are the approvedextended operating hours for providing service to users in all the customs offices in the country:
Assigning container inspections to a "green channel" for importers with a good record and creating a one-stop shop to streamline procedures is part of what has been proposed to reduce congestion at the port.
Constant complaints over problems and delays faced by entrepreneurs in the Honduran port terminal have led the government to prepare a series of measures to reduce container inspection times and streamline processes to export or import goods through the port.See: "Customs Problems Arise in Puerto Cortes Again".
Honduran businessmen have denounced the economic losses caused by delays in reviewing containers and are demanding more agility in customs procedures at the port.
The commercial sector is one of the most affected by the slowness of the customs procedures which must be carried out at Puerto Cortes.Jorge Faraj, president of the Chamber of Commerce and Industries of Cortés, told Laprensa.hn that"...If the problem is not resolved and if they do not get the merchandise out in time in the coming days of November, businesses will miss out on Christmas sales and that will be a big blow to the economy'."
The union of exporters has reported losses of $145 million, and more than 12,000 shipping containers held up because of the blockades which have now been going on for more than a week.
Reports indicate that two shipping companies have suspended operations at the ports and announced they will not disembark because of "inability to ensure the safety of their staff."This is just one example of the serious damage caused to in the country by the blockades and demonstrations held by truckers for almost a week at customs offices and ports in Guatemala.
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