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Ministry sends letter outlining less red tape and import costs for raw garments

Sok Chan / Khmer Times Share:
Containers ready for distribution as part of Cambodia’s trade. KT/Chor Sokunthea

To facilitate and support the garment sector currently encountering a lack of raw materials and to reduce logistics and transportation costs, the Ministry of Economy and Finance yesterday sought urgent measures to help the sectors importers and exporters. It sent a letter to the General Department of Custom and Excise signed by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Economy and Finance, Aun Pornmoniroth, saying the Customs Department will need to add more “green lanes” for the importation of garment raw materials as well as other garmentsaccessories required in the manufacturing process.

The Minister ordered the custom and excise department to facilitate the procedures and release goods as soon as possible.

“All Customs officials and relevant officials should cooperate with the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia (GMAC) to discuss with the freight forwarder and custom brokers to find a solution for transparent fees,” the letter read.

President of the Cambodia Freight Forwarders Association (CAMFFA) Sin Chanthy, welcomed the move. He said that the official Customs processing fee, Customs documents and Customs clearance is acceptable.

However, there is an issue with   unofficial fees in the port and during transportation.

“We are happy to see the ministry’s measure, but what we are waiting to see is the implementation. The implementation should be better,” Sin added. “We are happy to see more green lanes because it will facilitate the process quickly for the raw material imported for the garment sector.”

The Ministry of Economy said:  “If it is found that there are illegal fees being implemented there must be a legal measurement in response immediately. To implement the guidance with efficiency and effectiveness, the Customs Department must facilitate with relevant stakeholders and the authority in the ports and transport companies to ensure that the services provided go smoothly. In case of emergency, officials can extend the administration working hours,” the statement read.

GMAC said yesterday that it welcomed the government move for the active and urgent measurements. It said the association will continue discussions with the government, other ministries and other relevant stakeholders on the actual implementation of the policies stated as well as studying the possibility of other policies based on the data they have.

“We applaud the government measures to build trust among the investors in the garment, shoe and travelling bag sector,” said GMAC.

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