Enterprises seeking further reduction in customs red tape hinh anh 1(Photo:
Hanoi (VNA) -Despite efforts to hasten administrative reforms, there is still room for further reduction in customs procedures, and businesses expect more simplification.

A report on the business satisfaction with the customs administrative procedures launched on November 12 revealed that 82 percent of the more than 3,000 surveyed firms said that they expected customs administrative procedures to be further simplified and service quality to be enhanced.

Although as many as 94 percent of firms viewed changes in customs policies and regulations as positive, a significant 58 percent said they encountered difficulties in conducting customs procedures.

Notably, 28 percent of respondent businesses said they have to pay unofficial charges to complete customs procedures in Vietnam, down from the rate of 57 percent in 2012, and 49 percent in 2013. The report also revealed that 37 percent of the respondents said that they did not pay unofficial customs fees, while 35 percent were unaware of these fees.

The survey found that a majority of businesses rated the level of compliance of customs officers with regulations as "normal".

According to the Chairman of the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) Vu Tien Loc, the result of customs administrative procedures remained far below expectations of businesses, and called for enhanced cooperation among relevant agencies to hasten the process.

Nguyen Hoai Nam, Deputy General Secretary of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers, said specialised checks were complicated, and would burden firms.

Do Hoang Anh Tuan, Deputy Minister of Finance, said customs reforms contributed towards boosting the import-export turnover to more than 302 billion USD in the past 10 months.

Tuan added that the regulations about checks on quality and food hygiene and safety in import and export, which currently accounted for more than 72 percent of time for customs clearance, were to be amended in an effort the reduce the rates.

In addition, the customs sector would continue to upgrade the e-customs system. On December 5, the one-door customs system would be put into operation in Hai Phong city.

The survey was conducted from April to June by VCCI, the General Department of Customs and the Vietnam Governance for Inclusive Growth (GIG) Programme, which is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

The findings were expected to help identify appropriate measures to promote customs administrative reforms.-VNA