BEIJING, July 29 (People's Daily) The State Council recently held an executive meeting to make plans on further deepening reform in cross-border trade facilitation and improving the port business environment. At the State Council Policies Briefing held by SCIO on July 29, an official from the General Administration of Customs said that to put into action the guiding principles of the executive meeting of the State Council, the General Administration of Customs will launch 27 specific measures on five aspects with multiple departments and ministries including the National Development and Reform Commission, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Transport and the Ministry of Commerce, continuously improving China's port business environment.
We will deepen reform and promote innovation to further optimize the whole chain and process of customs clearance. We will create a more reasonable and efficient mode of customs clearance and promote the integrated reform of all the aspects of the customs services. We will integrate and simplify customs declaration forms and provide enterprises with diversified modes of declarations and tax payment guarantees to choose from. We will support the construction of overseas warehouses and improve the return policy for cross-border e-commerce exports. We will promote wider application of the "voluntary disclosure" system and error tolerance mechanism to encourage enterprises to consciously abide by the law and voluntarily fix the error. We will further facilitate export tax rebates. We will push forward the reform of the inspection and quarantine mode, optimize food and cosmetics inspection and quarantine regulation mode, and promote the pilot program of granting the power to determine whether the inspection result is admissible to the third party. Efforts will be made to deepen the integrated regulation of regional logistics.
We will review and regulate charges to further reduce the cost of import and export. We will consolidate the outcome of reviewing and regulating port charges, and constantly improve the standardization and transparency of port charges. We will revise the Measures for Calculating Port Charges to urge port operating entities to further regulate and reduce charging items, clarify names of charging items and service content. We will also introduce a bidding system to encourage fair competition among market players. We will make public the port charges and provide better services, publicize the list of port fees, update the list regularly, and encourage ports to provide a "one-stop" payment service if conditions permit.
We will strengthen science and technology empowerment, and further enhance the comprehensive service capacity of ports. We will improve the "single window" for international trade, handle all the business related to ports and cross-border trade through "single window," strengthen the connectivity between "single window" and overseas trade, and support local "single window" in providing services with local features. We will promote the intelligent transformation of port construction, and paperless port logistics documentation including equipment interchange receipt, container load plan and bill of lading. We will also encourage shipping lines to standardize the electronic bill of lading, to better build automated terminals and promote intelligent checkpoints, autonomous trucks and other new technologies, expand the application scope of intelligent picture review to improve port infrastructure and intelligent regulation.
We will further improve the overall service environment of cross-border trade more efficiently for the convenience of enterprises and citizens. We will coordinate government services and promote online handling of government services for ports. We will build a stable and transparent port service environment, publicize the time limit standards for logistics operations. We will also promote a "one-stop" shipping business inquiry platform for container stuffing appointments, electronic container release and accurate container stuffing and then push forward the comprehensive visualized query of the whole clearance process in the Customs, the Maritime Safety Administration, and other departments.
We will promote intelligent interconnection to further deepen cross-border clearance cooperation and exchange at ports. We will improve the supply capacity and turnover efficiency of international logistics containers, encourage container hub ports to transit containers by LCL services, support the development of the international road transport business. We will strengthen cross-border customs clearance cooperation to push forward the cooperation on clearance regulation and information exchange between China and the countries (regions) that participate in the "Belt and Road" Initiative and encourage more enterprises and routes to join SSTL (Secure and Smart Trade Line) pilot program. We will continue to improve cross-border customs clearance facilitation and form synergy with the trade facilitation measures in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.
According to Huang Guansheng, CPC Committee Member of GACC and Head of National Office of Port Administration, the global ranking of China's Trading across Borders indicator has jumped from 97th in 2017 to 56th in 2019, with a seventh place among economies using shipping transport for both import and export. So far, the number of regulatory certificates that need to be verified in import and export has been reduced from 86 in 2018 to 41, reduced by 52.3%. In June 2021, the overall national import and export clearance time was 36.68 hours and 1.83 hours respectively, cut by 62.34% and 85.15% respectively compared to 2017.
(Reporter: Du Haitao)