The ASEAN Single Window (ASW) is a regional initiative that connects and integrates Nation-al Single Window (NSW) of ASEAN Member States. The ASW’s objective is to expedite cargo clearance and promote ASEAN economic integration by enabling the electronic exchange of border trade-related documents among ASEAN Member States (AMS).
By 2020, all AMS (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam) have joined the ASW Live Operation, where the grating of preferential tariff treatment would be based on the Electronic Certificate of Origin (ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA) e-Form D) exchanged through the ASW. The ASW Live Operation will continue to open a vast window of opportunities for ASEAN to include more documents, such as ASEAN Customs Declaration Document (ACDD), electronic Phytosanitary Certificate (e-Phyto), electronic Animal Health Certificate (e-AH) and electronic Food Safety Certificate (e-FS) Certificate to be exchanged through the ASW in the future. The exchange of ACDD are currently being tested among Indo-nesia, Thailand and Viet Nam, while the exchange of e-Phyto Certificate are being tested between Indonesia and Viet Nam. The live exchange of these documents are expected to begin in 2020.
Single Window platform
The Philippines has officially joined the live operations of the ASEAN Single Window (ASW) starting Dec. 30, 2019, the Department of Finance (DOF) has said. According to Finance Undersecretary Gil Beltran, this means the Bureau of Customs (BOC), along with its Export Coordination Division (ECD) and Export Divisions in three pilot ports are now issuing the electronic Certificate of Origin (eCO) using the country’s National Single Window (NSW)—the TRADENET. gov.ph platform.
These pilot ports are the Port of Manila (POM), Manila International Container Port (MICP) and the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), Beltran said in a report to Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III.
Beltran said the issuance of eCOs is in compliance with Customs Memorandum Order (MO) No. 15-2019 signed by Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero last March and shall be done by the Philippines initially with Indonesia and Malaysia.
Beltran said going live on the ASW “lowers communication costs to as low as 10 percent of the original amount and encourages small enterprises to take advantage of preferential tariffs under ATIGA (ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement).” During the meeting of the ASEAN Committee of the Whole last Jan. 11 in Hanoi, Vietnam, Beltran reported that the ASW Steering Committee will add three documents to be exchanged via the platform, including the e-Phyto-Sanitary Certificate, e-Animal Health Certificate and the e-ASEAN Customs Declaration Document (ACDD).
“The ASW Steering Committee will also develop a roadmap to enable dialogue partners to join and exchange trade documents online with the ten (10) ASEAN countries. It will also develop guidelines to handle cancellation or revision of documents exchanged and set Business Process Specifications (BPS) using the Common Header,” Beltran said in his report to the Finance Secretary.
Beltran said the ASEAN Business Advisory Council (ABAC) agreed to help disseminate information on these activities to the private sector.
The Philippines’ NSW, dubbed TRADENET, aims to facilitate online the processing of permits, licenses and other clearances for the export and import of goods across the region. TRADENET will be connected and integrated to the NSWs of the other ASEAN members to expedite cargo clearance and promote regional integration. The Philippines’ goal is to eventually have all 76 trade regulatory government agencies under 18 government departments fully interconnected, in sync with the Duterte administration’s thrust to further improve the ease of doing business in the country.
Beltran said TRADENET aims to simplify import and export documentary processes covering an initial 7,400 regulated products