On the 20th of April, China Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine(CIQ) integrated into the General Administration of Customs (GAC), with both agencies operating together. This is a result of the institutional reform scheme approved during the 13th National People’s Congress.
As a result, the China Customs authorities has a new approach in responding to all regulations previously controlled independently by CIQ and GAC. CIQ and GAC are the 2 most important government agencies that are now cooperating during the import and export process. Many of the changes that have been made to the import and export process is to realize a single service window for one-time declarations. Previously, there were 2 certifications approved: 1 by GAC and 1 by CIQ, when companies needed to import or export. By optimizing the process and qualification for filing the customs declaration and the quarantine and inspection documents, companies will realize a smoother process that takes less time and reduces their administrative burden.
On the 28th of April, GAC announced the revision of 71 regulations and elimination of 2 regulations related to customs supervision.
The major benefits to companies because of these revisions are:
- Efficiency improvements in the import and export declaration process –
Before the new process, companies were required to submit the declaration to each government agency separately. If there was an inspection required, the shipment needed to be transferred to different locations to perform inspections. For example, GAC mainly checks the engine number of a vehicle, price, etc. and CIQ will check the safety indicators, such as vehicle brakes and steering national standards). Under the new process, both inspections will be handled in the same location and at the same time to improve the declaration process.
- Simplified declaration procedure –
In the past 2 years, the Chinese government has been promoting the “single window” process to integrate the customs clearance in global trade across the country. Companies can use the single window platform to submit their declaration and documents to both CIQ and GAC at the same time. They still need to visit different government agencies to communicate and get approval of some transactions, however the single window will deliver information to both GAC and CIQ and communicate with customs to finish the import or export process.
- Reduce administrative costs –
By consolidating the GAC and CIQ communication and process, companies are using one system, submitting a one-time declaration. This simplifies the import process and improves communication transparency. “Chongqing Port Office estimates that ‘single window’ reduces the cost to a company by more than 10%”, said by Mr. Zhang Guangzhi (Head of National Office of Port Administration). In addition, by combining the GAC and CIQ process, companies are reducing the effects of administrative and communication costs and burden associated with the duplication of efforts.
In 2018, the Chinese government has introduced efforts to improve efficiencies tied to trade facilitation regulations. The government’s efforts have been tied to a broader effort of stimulating global trade business across the country. These efforts are still in the early stages, as noted with the consolidation of GAC and CIQ. However, though the Chinese government faces challenges of reengineering their operational procedures to optimize these functions, the ultimate benefit is to companies that have implemented an automated solution that integrates with customs, realizing real-time data exchange, visibility and communication.
GAC announcement 2018 No.28
GAC Decrees No 238
GAC Decrees No 239
GAC announcement 2018 No.50
Interview with Mr.Zhang Guangzhi