Egypt's Finance Ministry approves new customs facilities to stimulate investment

Facilities include simplified procedures, reduced release times, rationalised customs clearance costs, and reduced commodity prices in local markets

  
Egypt's Finance Minister Mohamed Maait gestures during a news conference in Cairo, Egypt July 17, 2019.

Egypt's Finance Minister Mohamed Maait gestures during a news conference in Cairo, Egypt July 17, 2019.

REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh

Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait has issued a decision that includes new customs facilities to stimulate investments and reduce production costs.

The facilities include simplified procedures, reduced release times, rationalised customs clearance costs, and reduced commodity prices in local markets. The decision also aims to enhance competitiveness in foreign markets, particularly with the global trend towards coexistence with the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

A Ministry of Finance statement said the decision looks to develop the certified economic operator programme under ‘The White List’, in coordination with the National Food Safety Authority and the General Organization for Export and Import Control (GOEIC).

This will occur in a way that contributes to expanding the base of beneficiaries to include medium- and small-sized projects as an engine of economic growth.

The statement stressed that the Customs Authority will grant the label of a “certified economic operator” to those it deals with. This will include companies or individuals working on industrial, commercial or service activities, irrespective of business size, provided that the appropriate financial solvency is available.

The Ministry of Finance added in the statement that advantages and facilities will be granted to companies joining the “certified economic operator” programme through the “golden” and “silver” lists. This would reflect the extent of each company’s commitment to the programme, providing them with the opportunity to raise the level of their commitment every three years, following re-evaluation.

Maait added that the companies on the certified economic operator programme’s white list enjoy high priority in the customs registration declaration, actual examination, and funds settlement and recovery.

They also enjoy the lowest rate of actual examination of letters through the “green path” system. A dedicated committee at the main customs area focuses on completing letter release procedures. It has the mandate to conduct customs inspections at the company’s headquarters in coordination with release customs.

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