Guatemala: Is the Agile Import Window Useful?

A month after having implemented it only 12% of importers have registered and less than 1% of users use it for their foreign trade operations.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

To date only 4,700 users have registered their company details with the VAI electronic platform designed to handle the issue of non-tariff import permits. The importer enters their forms, makes the corresponding payments electronically, sends the information to the institution, receives a response and this allows them to access the Customs Declaration reported in an electronic permit which the user receives.

"Fernando Herrera, project manager and director of services for exporters at the Guatemalan Association of Exporters (AGEXPORT) mentioned to Siglo 21 that they are hope to register all of the importers after the first year of operations. However, there is still not widespread use of the system. Of registered users, less than 1% are already using the service for their foreign trade operations. "

"To date, the system provides health permits issued by the Ministries of Agriculture and Health. Other services from the departments of Environment, Culture, Energy and Mines and others will be incorporated. Importers have to access the site www.vai.gt to create their username and password. In addition, AGEXPORT gives a two-hour training workshop for appropriate access to the system. "



More on this topic

Nicaragua: Online Foreign Trade Procedures

February 2017

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).

Guatemala: Act on Agile Import Counter to be Modified

March 2014

Pressures on the customs sector have ensured that the ruling includes its recommendations, diluting the threat of strikes in customs offices.

The bill on the Agile Import Counter (VAI by its initials in Spanish) is looking for approval in Congress after the approval of resolutions. The union is expecting the promises it was made to be fulfilled.

Costa Rica Centralizes Foreign Trade Procedures

February 2014

An announcement has been made of a beta version of a digital platform for paperwork and export permits which is integrated with related institutions.

From a press release by the Ministry of Foreign Trade of Costa Rica :

This morning (yesterday) PROCOMER launched the beta version of Single Window for Foreign Trade (VUCE) 2.0 a project that will revolutionize the export sector and domestic importer, offering an interoperable platform ( with approvals in minutes) between the 16 state institutions state that are involved in foreign trade procedures.

One Stop Shop for Imports

October 2012

Representatives of public and private sectors in Guatemala are demanding the creation of a single process for import procedures, similar to that for exports.

Siglo21.com.gt notes that since in the country the “Ventanilla Unica” (single counter), also known as (VUPE) only works for exports, the director of Exporter Services, of the Guatemalan Association of Exporters (Agexport), Fernando Herrera, said there is a need to "create an Import Counter".

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