Costa Rica's Bureaucracy Affecting Central America

On the Nicaraguan side everything is ready for cargo transported to and from the port of Limon to save 160 kilometers, through the customs post of Las Tablillas, but endless red tape is preventing works from starting in Costa Rica.

Monday, April 3, 2017

The Legislature granting approval for a loan to finance the work, completion of administrative procedures, the holding of a tender to hire a project manager who must then then tender the work internationally, are all of the steps that have to be completed to just to get work started at the customs post in Las Tablillas.

See: "Las Tablillas Customs Post: All Spruced Up But No Visitors"

The border post "...started operations in the border area with Nicaragua in May 2015 with the idea of taking the strain off of Peñas Blancas in terms of entry of people and goods from the northern region, mainly because it would save traveling 160 kilometers on the road to the ports in Limón. That means about 800 fewer containers a month would have to go through the Central Valley in order to reach the Caribbean, according to estimates from 2013."

Nacion.com explains that on the Costa Rican side, "...The problem is that in order to finalize the draft project, decisions and procedures need to be made in the country which are taking longer than imagined. In an extremely optimistic estimate, Jhon Fonseca, vice minister of Foreign Trade, said that it could be ready by 2019 or 2020. However, he himself detailed the long list of outstanding actions, some of which are beyond the control of the executive branch. "



More on this topic

Issues Pending in Guatemala - El Salvador Customs Union

February 2016

While authorities have reactivated the process for binational customs liberalization, entrepreneurs have pointed to constraints on issues related to bureaucracy, corruption, and infrastructure at border crossing points.

The governments of Guatemala and El Salvador have resumed work in Technical Groups to liberalize binational border posts.

Las Tablillas Customs Post: All Spruced Up But No Visitors

February 2016

The Nicaraguan side is all ready for cargo transported to and from the port of Limón to save 250 kilometers, but the poor condition of a section of road in Costa Rica is preventing it.

The idea for the construction of the bridge over the San Juan River within the territory of Nicaragua, was to speed up freight between that country and the ports in Limon, on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica.

Customs Offices in Costa Rica: A Thorn in its Side

November 2014

Exporters claim that the lack of staff at border posts at certain times of the day is slowing the processes for customs clearance, security and sanitation issues.

Lack of staff and lack of coordination in the timetables for services provided to carriers are the main causes of the constant delays faced by companies that transport goods from Costa Rica to Central America.

Delays Continue at Customs Offices in El Salvador

May 2014

Problems persist in the process of reviewing merchandise at the border posts in Amatillo and La Hachadura causing delays to cargo trucks.

Double review processes, recurring failures with x-ray machine inspection and the absence of a contingency plan for unforeseen delays has generated delays of between 19 and 23 hours for the approval of entry and exit of goods, said the Salvadoran Association of International Freight Carriers (ASTIC).

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