By Mahnaz Abdi

Single-window a key achievement for Iran’s cross-border trade

December 24, 2017

The single-window system is a trade facilitation idea enabling cross-border traders to submit regulatory documents at a single location and/or single entity. Such documents are typically customs declarations, applications for import/export permits, and other supporting documents such as certificates of origin and trading invoices.

In Iran, the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA) unveiled a single-window system for cross-border trade on October 7, 2014 and now considers it a key achievement, as IRICA Head Foroud Asgari says establishment of such system has increased the country’s customs income 61 percent in the past Iranian calendar year (ended on March 20, 2017) despite fall in the imports during that year.

The single-window system has reduced customs formalities time from 26 days to three days for imports and from seven days to one day for exports.

While making transparency in the process of information exchange between the export and import organizations with the IRICA, the single-window system facilitates the condition for the legal traders while makes it difficult and preventive for the smugglers and those who break the laws and regulations, as Asgari asserted that the single-window system is a window toward transparency in trade.

In the annual meeting of the customs executive directors on November 1, Asgari referred to the presence of 27 related organizations in the single-window system as one of the achievements of this system which has facilitated and developed trade through reduction of time and cost for the commodity owners.

Single-window system has come close to the final stage and its most efficiency; so IRICA and related organizations should help remove the remained problems, the official noted.

It is also worth mentioning that the World Bank in its report titled ‘Doing Business 2017’ released in April said that Iran has improved its trading across borders through applying the national single-window system.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran made exporting and importing easier by improving and expanding the services offered by the national single window”, the report said.

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