In a bid to boost trade with Asean countries, the Ministry of Commerce has started work on a plan that would allow special economic zones located near the border to issue certificate of origins to traders.
Technical assistance will be provided in order to build up the capacity of local commercial officials and staff at the SEZs, which are located in Koh Kong and Preah Sihanouk provinces, according to Ho Sivyong, director of the export department.
“We have expanded to special economic zones in Preah Sihanouk and Koh Kong. Now we are training the officials and companies located in the SEZs to help them on the use of the system,” Mr Sivyong said, adding that, “It will help traders save time in export procedures and expedite their shipments to Asean.
“We had site visits to SEZs in the two provinces. We hope we can equip them with the automation system soon,” Mr Sivyong said.
A certificate of origin (CO) is used to certify that a product is wholly produced in a country and is required by buyers from overseas. To obtain it, producers, traders and exporters must first submit a ‘D form’.
The ministry has recently delegated the issuance of ‘D forms’ to some provincial commerce departments across the country in order to facilitate business activity and exports.
The programme, which was launched last November, is now available in Palin, Battambang, Banteay Meanchey, Oddar Meanchey, Ratanakkiri, and Tbong Khmum.
The system was first introduced in a SEZ in the city of Bavet in Svey Rieng province, which shares a border with Vietnam.
The new arrangement will particularly benefit exporters whose offices are located in their respective provinces.
The process of applying for a CO now takes 16 hours, compared to 10 days to two weeks if the CO application was made at the Ministry of Commerce in Phnom Penh.