Demand for More Agility in Region’s Customs Offices

Unions in the region are asking their governments for more support for industry to help it to grow based on tax and customs systems that enable competitiveness.

Monday, February 11, 2013 reports that, "while there is no 24 hour, 365 days a year service at Nicaraguan borders, customs procedures remain dependent on cumbersome paperwork and the flow of vehicles on existing roads remains congested, you can not discuss a customs union, said yesterday Alfredo Marin, vice president of the Chamber of Industries of Nicaragua (Cadin).

According to Marin, the border post with the most delays is between Nicaragua and Costa Rica, where up to 300 containers wait a line. "This causes problems with costs, as it is expensive as sending goods to the U.S., plus the amount of documentation they require," said Marin.

Minister of Industry and Commerce of Nicaragua, Orlando Solorzano, said the problems at border crossings are the responsibility of all of Central America, not just on the Nicaraguan customs offices.

"We cant be competitive when the average truck speed through Central America is 16 mph and between New York and San Francisco it is 70 to 80 kilometers per hour," the official added.

More on this topic

Better Customs Offices to Combat Smuggling

June 2013

Central American industry is calling for strengthening of customs controls in the region, in order to contain the constant border crossings made with smuggled goods.

According to Carlos Enrique Rivera, secretary general of the Federation of Chambers and Industrial Associations of Central America and the Dominican Republic (FECAICA), at the border located in Melchor de Mencos, Peten, which borders Belize, there is no control to prevent the entry of illegal goods, which apparently heads toward Mexico, but 15% remains in Guatemala, without having made tax declarations.

Central American Industry Demands Improvements in Trade

April 2012

The Federation of Chambers and Industry Associations of Central America and the Dominican Republic are demanding that governments provide efficient management and eliminate obstacles to the movement of goods.

At the last meeting held in Panama the Chambers of Industry urged their governments to have greater efficiency in customs procedures for trade in goods in Latin America.

Customs Still a Problem

February 2012

Instead of being reduced, bureaucracy at the Central American borders is becoming increasingly burdensome, complicating and making intra regional trade more expensive.

Constant delays which increase transportation costs, lack of progress in the streamlining of customs procedures and a perceived stagnation of the customs and economic integration project are the most pressing problems observed by business associations in Central America.

Dispute over EU Meat Quota Allocation

July 2010

The proposal to divide up the 9,500 ton EU allocation equally is rejected by Nicaragua.

Onel Pérez, president of CANICARNE (Nicaraguan association of beef producers), commented that 70% of meat exported from Central America comes from Nicaragua.

Pérez and Ronald Blandón, director of Nicaraguan cattle farming association, CONAGAN, will travel to Honduras to discuss the distribution of the quota with other Central American businessmen.

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