Fully automated Customs to ensure full transparency

29 July 2015 03:23 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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Making Sri Lanka’s Customs procedures completely automated will perpetuate transparency, according to Sri Lanka Shippers’ Council Chairman Sean Van Dort, who spoke at the body’s Annual General Meeting recently.  

“No human intervention is required. Unfortunately in Sri Lanka and this part of the world, there’s this face-to-face mentality. 

People like to see us; not only for documentation, but for extra-curricular activities. Importers and exporters should not go through this. Genuine importers and exporters should be able to sit in their offices or at homes and get things done,” he said.

He said that such individuals are created by an environment, which was created by the traders. 

“We have created a monster over the years, where we are responsible for using various dubious ways of getting things done, because we are not correct in our approach. We always look at the short cuts, to violate anything at all costs, to ensure that the job is done. That has been a curse on us,” he said.
Van Dort challenged his peers to refrain from such practices. He added that with Sri Lanka’s potential in e-commerce, Sri Lanka Customs should work towards completely automating the system, building up on the Export Facilitation Centre, which was developed with the drive of the Sri Lanka Shippers’ Council.

He praised former Customs Director General Jagath Wijeweera—who stepped down abruptly, citing personal reasons in May—in attempting to create a level-playing field by modernising the Customs processes. (CW)

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