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29 June 2010

Philippine adopts global standard

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The Bureau of Customs (BOC) has acceded to the Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC), which is aimed at simplifying customs procedures worldwide. In a statement, Customs Commissioner Napoleon Morales said the agency deposited to the World Customs Organization (WCO) the Philippines’ instrument of accession, according to the Manila Times.

With this, the Philippines became the 70th contracting party to the RKC or the International Convention on the Simplification and Harmonization of Customs Procedures.

Accession to the RKC means that the Philippines agrees to conform to its provisions, and particular annexes that would translate into a more efficient, transparent and lower of cost of clearing Customs through the use of technology and simplified customs procedure.

The Joint Foreign Chambers had been egging on the Philippines to accede to the RKC to reap the benefits of increased foreign trade under an efficient customs rules and regulations regime.

Other Asian countries that joined the RKC were Pakistan, India, Malaysia and Vietnam.

The United States Council for International Business predicts that countries that fail to keep pace with world-class standards for customs administrations, such as those promulgated by the WCO and the World Trade Organization will find it increasingly difficult to attract new business, trade and foreign investment, as business cannot afford high logistics costs imposed by customs inefficiencies.

The Makati Business Club (MBC) also said in a statement that this move would help the country’s competitiveness as the government and the private sector came together to bring the landmark legislation to reality.

“We strongly believe that this will eventually help us improve our competitiveness. For the longest time, our competitiveness image in international business has been burdened by low rankings in the ease of doing business,” the statement read.

The MBC further said that “RKC accession, compliance and implementation will translate into more investments, more jobs for Filipinos and more revenues to the government to support social infrastructures, as well as deliver a strong platform to achieve a credible and clean government bureaucracy, which is the common desire and battle cry of every Filipino, especially for the incoming Aquino administration.”

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