Customs officers undertake survey to improve trade facilitation
The PNG Customs Service will embark on a survey aimed at finding out how long cargo clearance is taking, from arrival of goods to a port to delivery.
The survey called 'Time Release Study' or TRS, is a unique tool developed by the World Customs Organisation which enables Customs administrations around the world to measure the time taken to undertake its cargo clearance functions. Several countries have already undertaken the TRS including PNG's neighbouring Customs administration, the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service.
Following the survey, results of the TRS will then be used by PNG Customs to examine and streamline its business processes
A group of selected Customs officers from around the country attended a workshop in Port Moresby last week to commence planning for the TRS, which will take place in 2012. During the workshop the officers designed the methodology for the study and agreed that a short trial would be held in February or March this year, with a full study to be held in Lae, Morobe Province later in the year. A project plan was also developed and a working group was established to support the study. Customs will also be consulting with relevant industry members throughout the study for their support and assistance in collecting some of the data required.
Caretaker Commissioner John Pomoso opened the conference by emphasising the importance of the TRS and its use as a tool to modernise business procedures in ways that is complimentary to industry.
"Trade is increasing at an alarming rate in PNG and Customs needs information from programs such as the TRS to see where the organisation is and how Customs can improve", Mr. Pomoso said after the workshop. "Customs delivers critical services for the people of PNG and trainings or programs such as this are integral towards building a modern effective Customs service for this country."
The survey is being made possible through funding assistance from the Strongim Gavman Program and the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service.
MR. JOHN POMOSO
25 January 2012