Cargo Reporters To Utilize Advance Cargo Information System At Limited Cost

Basseterre, St. Kitts, September 03, 2020 (SKNIS): Cargo reporters in St. Kitts and Nevis and other CARICOM member states who utilize the Advance Cargo Information System (ACIS) will do so at limited cost. The system will also be beneficial to cargo reporters as it will increase efficiency and improve quality assurance.

“Mr. Speaker, it is anticipated that this proposed Advance Cargo Information system would come at no significant cost to the cargo reporters. Cargo reporters would now be able to access the system using a secure web page and they will not require specialized equipment or software to make submissions into the system,” said Prime Minister and Minister with responsibility for Customs Dr. the Honourable Timothy Harris during his presentation on the Advance Cargo Information Bill, 2020, that was passed in the National Assembly on Thursday, September 03, 2020.

Prime Minister Harris noted that there are additional benefits to be derived from the ACIS.

“Additionally, Mr. Speaker, Cargo reporters, businesses and consumers would benefit from improved facilitation of legitimate cargo. At the fulcrum of this, we are attempting to ensure only legitimate cargo enters the territorial space of St. Kitts and Nevis,” said Dr. Harris. “This improvement would flow from the expected increase in efficiency of cargo reporting having one system for submissions for multiple jurisdictions. So, once you enter one, you need not enter for each destination you would go. And, of course, the anticipated reduction of clearance times by the use of the risk assessment and the improved quality assurance.”

Dr. Harris reflected on the connection between the ACIS and the World Customs Organization

“Mr. Speaker, the Advance Cargo Information System forms a critical part of the World Customs Organization SAFE Framework of Standards and therefore, assisting participating countries to standardize and harmonize their electronic cargo information all in support of regional and international trade,” said the prime minister. “Access to regional and international intelligence database – which is what IMPACS would provide, through the receipt of real-time notification and pre-alerts improves the sharing of information between Customs Departments all over.”

He added that the “improvements in the screening of goods moving across borders, along with the present screening of passengers and crew would provide an additional deterrent to international terrorism, transnational organized crime and those who traffic in illegal narcotics, firearms and ammunition.”

The Advance Cargo Information System (ACIS) is a computer-based information system developed by UNCTAD system to track transport equipment and cargo. It comprises of standard tracking modules which are connected by a Backbone Information System (BIS) which will also connect each country in the sub-region thus enhancing regional integration. It has the added advantage of providing transport operators and ancillaries with reliable, useful statistics and immediate data on transport operations, thereby enabling transport operators to improve day to day management and decision making.

An important component of the ACIS concept is its inherent ability to enhance the process of regional integration. By providing transport operators and other economic actors in the region with timely, accurate and instant information, ACIS can help decision-makers to harmonize policies of the beneficiary countries.

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