ADB’S Japan Fund to aid customs modernisationThe Japanese government and the Asian Development Bank are partnering to support the government of Nepal in modernising its customs services and making them more effective and efficient.
The project is being funded by a $ 1.5 million capacity development technical assistance (CDTA) from the Japanese government’s Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR) to be administered by the ADB. The CDTA will also facilitate Nepal’s accession to the Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC) to help the country gain from greater integration into the world trading system.
“The CDTA will provide full support to the ongoing trade facilitation programme in Nepal to ensure that the key legal, regulatory and institutional and capacity requirements for customs modernization and reforms take place by 2015, making the customs services in Nepal at par with international standards,” said Madhu Kumar Marasini, joint secretary at the Ministry of Finance at a programme to announce the initiative on Wednesday.
Speaking at the same event, Kenichi Yokoyama, the ADB’s Country Director for Nepal, said, “Improving customs processes is part of the South Asia Sub-regional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) programme facilitated by the ADB.”
The ADB approved in November 2012 SASEC Trade Facilitation Programme loans and grants to Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal to help develop modern customs administrations, streamline regulations and procedures and provide improved services and information to traders.
The CDTA will provide resources and capacity to put into effect the reforms being promoted under the trade facilitation programme.
The CDTA is expected to help the government of Nepal to reach consensus to accede to the RKC by raising stakeholders’ awareness of the convention. The CDTA will also provide technical training to customs officials on issues related to customs automation and help establish a Customs Information Portal so that Nepal can share accurate and detailed information related to trade and customs.
The CDTA is being implemented over a 24-month period from September 2013 to August 2015. The ADB’s South Asia Regional Department is the executing agency and Nepal’s Department of Customs is the implementing agency.